Walkers support senior citizens

Walkers wait to set off as the event organiser Florence Shearman hands the mic back to emcee George Simon.

Undaunted by blustery weather conditions, dozens of hardy souls walked the Cambridge Raceway track on Monday morning in recognition of senior citizens.

Buttoned up against the wind, they stepped out as part of the International Global Walk to Recognise the Value of Older People. The event was organised locally by Cambridge’s Florence Shearman to mark the United Nations-designated International Day of Older Persons on October 1.

Joining the seniors and their supporters were a few special guests who enjoyed several laps of the track in two-seater sulkies driven by retired trotting and harness drivers. The dignitaries included Waipa District Mayor Jim Mylchreest; Diane Turner, the Wellington-based director of the Office for Senior Citizens at the Ministry of Social Development; and Charles Gower, advocate at the Waikato-based Nationwide Health & Disability Advisory Trust.

Mayor Jim Mylchreest and Florence Shearman in their sulkies, steered by drivers Nicky Chilcott and Dylan Ferguson respectively.

Also, there was Age Concern Hamilton executive officer Brent Nielsen, and numerous other representatives of local organisations.   Sport Waikato lent additional support this year, and mounted a stand carrying informative brochures on the various health and welfare activities and services available to seniors.

Providing entertainment throughout was the local band Passion, made up of brothers Ernie and Robert Muru.

The theme of the 2017 UN-designated commemoration was “Stepping into the Future: Tapping the Talents, Contributions and Participation of Older Persons in Society.”

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