WHY A MINISTRY FOR OLDER PERSONS IN AFRICA?
- It is estimated that over 1 million seniors in Uganda live in poverty, loneliness, isolation, and hopelessness.
- Seniors are among the poorest in Uganda, with 64% living on less than one US dollar per day.
- Due to conflict, illness, and death of the middle generation, the elderly are left to care for their grandchildren alone.
- More than 500,000 orphans with HIV or AIDS in Uganda are under the care of their elderly grandparents.
- 56% of the elderly in Uganda suffer from physical disabilities and 39% have visual impairments with no medical system in place to aid them.
- There is no pension plan in place to provide for those entering old age.
- There is no social system in place to look after children without parents.
- Those who are close to seniors lack the education and means to provide them the support needed to thrive.
- ROTOM expanded into this region in 2017 and is registered with the Ethiopian Charities & Society Agencies.
- The seniors served here are in a heavily urban area.
- The government does not offer a formal social security program or pension; although many worked well into their elder years.
- Many have lost their children to HIV/AIDS and now are responsible to care for their grandchildren.
- Changes in the societal perception of seniors has lead to a loss of social capital, resulting in a decline of respect for the elderly.
- Seniors are often alienated from their communities and desperate for connection.