Seniors from the South Asian Community filled Berala Community Hall to its capacity on Saturday 15 June to for Eid Milan event organised by South Asian Muslim Association of Australia (SAMAA).
The program commenced with a Naat, poetry dedicated to Prophet Mohammad (s), in the melodious voice of the popular Sydney singer Shagufta Zia.
The Health and Wellbeing Lead at Uniting, Anju Mathur gave a detailed presentation on how to cope with ageing and how to access aged care services at home.
Anju Mathur emphasised the need for the community seniors to be upfront in telling their difficulties in order to access services which they are eligible for. She presented some valuable information in this regard
Access to any help at home is made through making a referral to My Aged Care Tel 800 200 422, Monday to Friday 8am – 8pm; Saturday 10am – 2pm. There is no cost involved in the referral and the assessment process is free of charge.
Translator and Interpreter Services number is 131 450. Help can be available for domestic Assistance, shopping and for going to group social outings under the Commonwealth Home Support Program. There are four levels of packages for Homecare which will depend on aged care assessment.
Anju answered important questions raised by seniors and their carers present in the audience.
Another guest speaker was Dr Abdur Rahman Asarogulu, Director of the Gallipoli Home, the first aged care home in Sydney dedicated to serving the needs of Muslim & culturally diverse elders.
This facility has been built by the Turkish Muslim community and is of the highest quality with state of the art facilities, alongside a beautiful aesthetic fusing modern architecture with traditional Turkish, Indigenous Australian, and Islamic elements. The staff at Gallipoli Home speak multiple languages including Urdu, Hindi and Bengali.
NSW MP Julia Finn applauded SAMAA’s efforts in addressing the critical need of South Asian elders. Dressed in traditional South Asian Shalwar Kameez, she enjoyed the Eid celebrations with SAMAA seniors and their families.
Mr Zahid Jamil welcomed the seniors, volunteers and guests on behalf of SAMAA. He applauded Anju Mathur for her community work apart from her role at Uniting. He was equally praiseworthy of Dr Ar Abdur Rahman Asarogulu for his role in building the grand facility and his contribution in Turkish and wider Muslim communities.
Mr Jamil said that the core issue was of the community awareness. There is huge reluctance in talking about the old age issues among seniors and their families and therefore they miss out on services for which they are eligible for.
Dr Sikander Khan made dua for late Mr Kazim Hussain who had passed away a few days earlier. He paid tribute to Mr Hussain for his role in Sydney’s Muslim organisation and institution including SAMAA over several decades.
Several local poets and singers entertained the audience in the second half including Shagufta Zia, Shahid Malik, Tariq Mirza, Shujaat Atif, Taufeeq Ahmad and Shaikh Nizam Thanvi. Mr Fasihuddin Khan kept the audience engaged in the second half while Ali Ahsan was the master of ceremony for the official program.
Mr Ejaz Ahmad, Syed Afzal Hussain, Mrs Mona Zahid, Mr Shahid Alvi and other members and volunteers took care of all arrangements to ensure the comfort of all guests.