Sixty + Counts event raises R70 000 for NGO Ikamva Labantu
On Thursday 12 October 2017, the Sixty + Counts panel discussion and silent auction at Alliance Française du Cap highlighted the important role that older persons play in South Africa together with the challenging living conditions that many elderly face daily.
Ambassador of France to South Africa, His Excellency Mr. Christophe Farnaud attended the event with Consul General of France in Cape Town, Laurent Amar, and Ikamva Labantu founder, Helen Lieberman, who earlier this year was awarded the “Officier de l’Ordre de la Légion d’Honneur”.
The Sixty + Counts initiative is a partnership between the Embassy of France in South Africa and Cape Town based NGO Ikamva Labantu and recognises the International Day of Older Persons (1 October) and South Africa’s Older Persons Week (30 September – 6 October) and Social Development Month (October).
The panel discussion focused on the challenging realities for the elderly in South Africa, whilst also highlighting the work that is being done and what can still be done through collaboration between Government and non-governmental organisations. Panellists included Owen Kleinhans from the Department of Justice, Dr Leon Geffen, Executive Director, Samson Institute for Ageing Research, Gavin Weir, Director of Sector Task Team for Older Persons and Lulama Sigasana, the Head of the Seniors Programme at Ikamva Labantu.
The silent auction of photographic portraits by Jonothan Basckin, of eldery persons in Cape Town’s townships, resulted in R70 000 being raised for the Ikamva Labantu Seniors Programme, a programme that oversees and supports 19 independently managed Senior Clubs and an outreach programme throughout Cape Town’s townships.
In his speech, Ambassador Farnaud said: “France is committed, with local partners, to the social transformation of South Africa through projects such as this one. On the occasion of the International Day of Older Persons, we wanted to highlight and promote the excellent work done by Ikamva Labantu and put the spotlight on the rights of older people in South African society”.
Any of the photographs that were not sold through the silent auction are now on sale to the general public and the exhibition will be open to the public at the Alliance Française du Cap until 29 October.
Picture credit: Ikamva Labantu