“My children say that my presence upsets their family life,” says Mohammad Shafeeq Huq, a 71 year-old resident at the Al Mustafa Welfare Trust (AMWT) care home in Lahore.“They want to live as they wish, with no interference. I miss them too much but they don’t miss me.” Mohammad Shafeeq weeps when he speaks about his family. Having been with us for a while now, he has settled into his new life at the care home, but the pain of abandonment never goes away.
A widower, Mohammad Shafeeq raised two sons and one daughter. He was a caring father who worked hard to put his children through school. He got them all married and supported them to build their own families. But when Mohammad Shafeeq’s deteriorating health meant he needed care, none of his children were willing to have him stay with them. Neither his sons nor his daughter wanted to look after him.
Despite our Islamic values, a growing number of vulnerable older adults are abandoned to a life of poor health and isolation in predominantly Muslim countries like Pakistan. At AMWT we’re working to put a stop to this.
Old age is a stage of life that awaits us all. It should be a time of comfort and support, where the loved ones we cared for will care for us. But this is often not the case. Too many older adults, like Mohammad Shafeeq, rely solely on the generosity of strangers. Without the support of our Honour the Elderly programme, our sponsored granddads and grandmothers would have nowhere to turn. The majority of them would even be homeless.
Please help us honour our elderly. Sponsor an older adult in need today.