Can you imagine spending four nights sleeping rough at a railway station? Can you imagine doing it in poor health and old age? This is what Muhammad Jamil had to do when his son turned him out.
Muhammad Jamil is a widower and a father of three. He worked in public service, as a railway employee for many years. By the time he retired at age 60, Muhammad Jamil had given all his children an education, put his son through university, and arranged good marriages for his two daughters.
Paying for his son’s degree in Computer Science, meant he had little savings by the time he became a pensioner. Muhammad Jamil spent what remained of his savings, on his son’s marriage. Eventually he had to move in with his son's family, when his health began to deteriorate and he no longer had the means to pay the rent. But he didn't find the family welcoe he thought he'd get.
After a few months, Muhammad Jamil’s daughter in-law insisted she didn’t want him to live with them any more. He hoped one of his own daughters would take him in, but they did not offer. The night that Muhammad Jamil’s son turned him out he could only think of one place to go: the local railway station where he once worked.
“I was forced to leave their house knowing that I had no place to go. I spent my nights at the railway station.” Muhammad Jamil recalls how one evening a stranger at the station helped him. “One man took me to an Elderly Shelter Home. Since then I’m living here. No one came to find me.”
Muhammad Jamil’s story is more common than we’d think. Many of the elderly people at AMWT’s Care Home in Lahore have been abandoned by their own children. After suffering such betrayal, it takes time for these men and women to reconnect with people and regain their self-worth. But we won’t give up on them.
At Al Mustafa Welfare Trust (AMWT), our Honour the Elderly programme, enables donors to sponsor the care of a vulnerable elderly person. It allows us to tackle loneliness, neglect and social isolation in old age.
Please help us honour our elderly. Please sponsor an older adult in need today.