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First Lady responds to numerous invitations, spearheads care for elderly

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First Lady responds to numerous invitations, spearheads care for elderly


In response to numerous calls on her office to visit their areas with her programme of caring for the elderly, First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa this week visited Muzvezve community in Mhondoro-Ngezi.
She spent the day assisting the elderly due to the realisation that old age is an important phase in life and the elderly people need special care and attention to lead healthy lives.
In most cases when they become older, they become sick and frail and their conditions therefore, come with the need for more attention, more love and more understanding.
It is against this background that Amai Mnangagwa is encouraging families and communities to spare time to check on the elderly to ensure they neither wallow in poverty nor live lonely and miserable lives.
Amai Mnangagwa is on record saying: “They raised us and made sure we grow up to be the people that we are today. We need to provide them with the best care because they cared for us and now they are the ones who need us. Caring for them and attending to their daily needs is one of the many ways we can show that we love and appreciate them.”
The mother of the nation is going around the country mobilising people from various religious denominations and surrounding communities to clean homes of the elderly and cook for them as she continues sowing the seeds of love and unity countrywide.
Due to failing health, most elderly people cannot perform household tasks leaving the need to care for them in the hands of the able-bodied.
Some family members accuse the elderly of practising witchcraft, worsening their misery.
First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa is assisted by women from churches to prepare and serve lunch to Gogo Eunika Daidai and her family in Mhondoro-Ngezi.
However, yesterday was a different day for the elderly in Mhondoro-Ngezi who were paid a visit by Dr Mnangagwa who spent time with them cleaning their homes, cooking and shared a meal with them.
The mother of the nation also gave them new blankets, kitchen utensils that included sets of pots
plates and cups leaving them happy.
She also gave them blankets to beat the cold weather that is approaching and foodstuffs, toiletries that can last them for several months.
So excited were the elderly with the First Ladyʼs visit that they could be seen dancing and shedding tears of joy.
First to be visited was the home of Gogo Eunika Daidai (85) who lives with her widowed brother Sekuru Tanyanyiwa Maguru (95) and her grandchildren.
Mbuya Eunika said her brother previously lived in Zvishavane where he sadly lost all his family, wife and children, leaving him without anyone to care for him.
This prompted her to take him in.
Dr Mnangagwa first sought permission to clean the homes of her hosts in line with the countryʼs traditional norms and values.
“Pamusoroyi mbuya nasekuru, I have come so that we spend time together and kindly permit me to perform your household chores as you relax,” she said.
Gogo Daidai granted the request.
“Feel free to do as you please mwanangu. We welcome you warmly. You will have a lot of work on your hands because it has been long before the house was cleaned because I have an aching back.
“The love you have shown me my daughter is great,” she said.
First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa packs, in the traditionally made kitchen unit, new dinner plates, cups and pots she donated to Gogo Eunika Daidai while she was cleaning her homestead in Mhondoro-Ngezi Dr Mnangagwa weighed in saying she would measure up to the task with the assistance of the worshippers and women from the community.
“Do not fear for us as we shall work collectively with other women to lighten the burden. I have
brought my peers from churches and members of the communities who have visited other homesteads on a similar mission,” she said.
Sekuru Magura also expressed his gratitude to the mother of the nation for the visit.
“We are grateful that you have come to visit us while we are still alive. This is what we call true love.
You have brought us a lot of food and blankets and for this we are so grateful,” he said.
Dr Mnangagwa cleaned the yard, the house and did laundry.
She also prepared mouthwatering sadza, rice, nyevhe, black jack in peanut butter, beef stew and chicken which she served the family members and those who were working at the home.
When she handed over the goods to Gogo Eunika, she shed tears of joy saying she never owned dinner plates and nice cups. She said she could not remember when last she bought new pots and blankets.
Amai Mnangagwa helped the old lady arrange the new plates in her thatched kitchen, replacing the ones that were old and with holes.
After sharing a meal with the family, Amai Mnangagwa said her goodbyes and headed to Sekuru David Malungisaʼs homestead who stays with his grandchildren.
His wife and some of his children died.
She performed similar chores at the home, leaving him and his grandchildren wearing a broad smile and with a sense of belonging.
“I am so grateful and today we have been blessed by Amaiʼs visit. In our lifetime we had never had such an important visit. What she has done has impressed everyone, especially myself. The work done here has pleased me and I ask God to continue smiling at us. My home is now airy because I have been visited by Amai vane rudo. I live with my grandchildren who look after me after their grandmother passed on in October 2014,” he said.
Women from various churches doing laundry for the elderly during a visit by First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa to the elderly in Mhondoro-Ngezi Dr Mnangagwa also visited Mbuya Shamiso Masendekeʼs home who stays with her young grandchildren and did the same with many other women.
There were teams set up by the First Lady who were scattered in many homes. Cde Mary Mliswa-Chikoka, the Minister of State for Mashonaland West Provincial Affairs and Devolution participated in cleaning the homes.
For all the homesteads visited, Amai Mnangagwa brought sets of pots, sets of dinner plates, sets of cups, foodstuffs and toiletries.
Gogo Masendeke said she was so happy to have been visited by the First Lady.
“I am very happy that God has remembered me through our mother. I was so elated hearing that she had come to see me. It was a surprise visit and I cherish the moment. I no longer have parents, but God today gave me a mother who did everything for me, including cooking for me and giving us blankets to keep ourselves warm as winter is fast approaching.
“I feel humbled and I pray that my grandchildren also grow and come to an age where they can look after me. I have never seen this kind of love in our country Zimbabwe. Our mother has shown me great love even when I did not even expect it. She just came as I was seated at my homestead. She has come to wipe my tears this,” she said happily.
Dr Mnangagwa later addressed the community, hammering on the need to care for the elderly at all times.
“I wish to thank people from various churches and women from surrounding communities whom I have worked with today. I encourage you members of various churches to include the elderly in your groups and conduct prayer sessions in their homes.
“All you women must lead in seeing how the elderly will be living and I wish you carry forward this programme and not do it today only because what you have done today as I saw you where we were working, you are teachers and builders of your homes first and expand to other places because you want to have a good daughter-in-law and good son-in-law in the future.
“This is where good manners start. We should teach our children the right way to follow. They should grow up knowing that our elderly need their care,” she said to applause.
Minister of State and Devolution Mary Mliswa-Chikoka sweeps in the kitchen at Sekuru David Malungisaʼs homestead during a visit by First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa to the elderly in Mhondoro-Ngezi Mashonaland West Provincial social development officer Mrs Agnes Mutowo thanked the First Lady for her benevolence.
“The programme brought by the First Lady has given us warmth because she is showing us the way.
Each time she comes she shows us how things are supposed to be done.
“Even the elderly themselves felt happy seeing that the First Lady has come to visit them. We value such programmes because she comes to assist us time and again. Our work is also becoming easier because of the way she is showing us.
“She is a mother who is full of love and brings people together. As the department of Social welfare we barely visit most areas but have had to come because of Amai. Our mother visits all places including hard to reach areas. Our statistics of visiting vulnerable people are improving because of our mother who is leading us the way and guiding us as her children. We are so thankful to her,” she said.
Women from various churches doing laundry for the elderly during a visit by First Lady Dr Auxillia Mnangagwa to the elderly in Mhondoro-Ngezi
Mrs Judith Ndanga from the Pentecostal Church of Christ International also sang praises to the First Lady for her love.
“We are so happy and thankful as worshippers that we have learnt something from our mother.
“She came and taught us to prepare indigenous dishes which we did not know. She has united all churches and the people out there. We learnt a big lesson that we must look after the elderly by giving them care,” she said.
The Minister of State weighed in saying; “We are thankful for this great programme which is building families. The programme is essential because she is teaching us to continue looking after the elderly,
our parents. Even though we work in towns, we should remember where we came from.
“Amai is bringing back family values so that we are not detached from our roots. What is happening
here today where we are washing for the elderly and preparing meals for them is important because we will be sharing stories with them. The elderly may not know what will be happening outside there.
“They no longer travel as they used to so we are the ones who tell them what will be happening around. The root she has planted we need to take it up as Mashonaland West by checking on our elderly every month. The other painful thing is that some old people are abandoned and have no one
to care for them. They end up in old peopleʼs homes yet they have children,” she said. Herald

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