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With rapid advances in healthcare and urbanization, senior citizens are living fitter and longer lives. There are heart-rending illustrations in our society of families abandoning their parents or family members when they grow old and “unproductive”. The hands that had rocked their cradles, fed and clothed them, sacrificed their small pleasures for the sake of happiness of their children are now felt “unwanted”. Their presence is an embarrassment in the so-called elite societies that the children socialize in! For the sake of such deserted, abandoned, unwanted poor old women, VFS has established an Old Age Home. These hapless women are given shelter, are fed, clothed and above all cared for. Care is taken to see that they are given respect and dignity that they deserve.

Since 1st December 1993, the old age home for the most marginalized women has come into being at Pancharul village in Udaynarayanpur block under Howrah district of West Bengal state with the financial support of Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India.

In adherence of the overall objective for providing a better quality of lives with proper shelter and to fulfill the basic needs of the aged, who are widowed, neglected and have no one else to look after, women from the pro-poor category and really needy in every respect were selected from a long list of applicants. The residents are kept engaged with day-to-day household work, helping in kitchen, prayers, yoga, meditation, pranayama etc. and spend their spare time reading newspapers & magazines, and gardening etc. Special attention is provided to each member so that she never feels left alone. Special arrangements are also made so that they get company from the community. Considering their requirements, morning tea, breakfast, lunch, snacks and nutritious foods are served to the residents. Adequate apparels are provided twice a year. Woollen garments, shawls and blankets are also provided. Special care is offered to sick persons and one visiting doctor attends on the sick persons regularly. For entertainmen,t the centre also has the provision of color television with cable connections.

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