Celebrating Healthy Ageing with the Macarena
In the nation’s capital this morning, senior citizens showed that age ought not to get in the way of being healthy and active; in it is just a number. They dusted off their shoes and danced away the Macarena like pros. Others also joined in the flash mob to celebrate the anniversary of the National Council of Ageing, connecting with persons from all walks of life. News Five’s Duane Moody was there and has a report.
Duane Moody, Reporting
Market Day in Belmopan is always bustling with shoppers in the Capital, but around eight this morning, trafficking officers cordoned off a portion of the Ring Road. It wasn’t as the result of an RTA, but senior citizens along with students and working persons blocked traffic in a staged intergenerational flash mob as the first of several activities to commemorate the fourteenth anniversary of the National Council of Ageing.
Ixchel Poot, Executive Director, National Council of Ageing
“We wanted to do something new, something innovative, to celebrate the council. As our name says, we are a council on ageing and although we pay attention greatly to the concerns of older persons, one of our jobs is to connect younger people and older people. So we thought about an intergenerational flash mob because it showcases older persons in a new innovative way, doing something that people do not expect them to do. And then we said you know what, it’s important to also have the younger people connect.”
Many organizations joined the older citizens as well as dozens of students from primarily schools, high schools and university as well as youth groups from Belmopan. The event highlighted that healthy ageing is a key component of growing older.
Ernesia Dominguez, Member, CAYA
“CAYA is a girl group that says Come As You Are. It doesn’t matter if you are tall or short; it doesn’t matter if you are obese or slim; it doesn’t matter if you are dark or white…it just means come as you are because we are not being judgmental. Our purpose of being here this morning is just to support the elderly and show everyone that it doesn’t matter what age you are, you can still be active.”
Kimone Zuniga, 3rd Form Student, Our Lady of Guadalupe High School
“The old people are important and making them feel young again is something great to get into doing. It’s really fun because it is the first time that we are doing this. So it was really enjoyable and I would love to do this again. They moved better than I do, so it’s surprising actually because my teacher told me to do just one round and they did more than one. so I just went and did it with them.”
Can you do the Macarena? The Senior Step Group, formed by the N.C.A. back in 2010, took charge and crowded the center of the pavement. Seenager Beverley Swasey says that they are proving that ‘not because yo old means yo cold.’
Beverly Swasey, Member, Belmopan Senior Steps Group
“It was necessary because the national council on ageing was the group that started up this senior steps dance group for health and fitness among seniors. So we are the ones who originally started to do the Macarena and all these dances and so it was necessary for us to come out and show the younger folks that getting old doesn’t mean getting cold and not exercising and not doing anything; just sitting down. So we had to be out here. We originally started this Macarena dance.”
“How does it feel to see that there was so much support that came out from people of all ages?”
“Yes it is necessary because people tend to want to put age as a limit to certain things. And at any age, you should be dancing, exercising, enjoying life and that’s what we wanted.”
Duane Moody for News Five.