Gozo conference – Active Ageing: Present and Future Challenges
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The Minister for Gozo Justyne Caruana addressed the opening of the conference – Active Ageing: Present and Future Challenges – which was held in Gozo.
This well attended conference, was organised by the Malta Union of Midwives and Nurses, and held for the first time in Gozo.
The Minister expressed her satisfaction that a conference of this nature was being held in Gozo, “where unfortunately a substantial proportion of the population is elderly,” she said.
“Gozo is often called a home for the elderly because we have an ageing population. But I believe that the challenge of ageing can be changed into an opportunity, not just employment, because this field requires trained dedicated human resources – where the don’t just see an elderly person, elderly patient or elderly resident, but are seeing a person who is a mother, father, grandmother or grandfather, or a relative or friend of someone,” said Dr Caruana.
She mentioned a substantial number of measures implemented in the last legislature, during which Minister Caruana had been charge of this sector, which had brought peace of mind to elderly residents, including the launch of new services, as well as strengthening existing services.
The Minister for Gozo stressed that the active ageing centres opened in Gozo are achieving their goals, because they are attended by many elderly people, and it is the aim of the Ministry to increase the number of centres on the island, Dr Caruana said.
The Minister for Gozo said that a memorandum of understanding had recently been signed between the Ministry for Gozo and the Gozo Diocese to work together, “because we believe that together, we are combining our resources where they are most needed – working for social services in the Gozitan community.”
Minister Caruana pointed out how the Government’s plan is to have 500 beds for the elderly in Gozo, the Ministry is opening the new home for the elderly Ghajnsielem and others are planned for the future.
Photograph: MGOZ/George Scerri