Voices of youth: Young people should step out of comfort zone and reach out to the elderly

I sympathise with the elderly who die alone, with no one to journey with them in the final stage of their lives (Am I my neighbour's keeper? The tragedy of those who die alone, Dec 7).

As a teenager who is surrounded by caring friends and family members, I have to admit that I do not spend time with the elderly living around me.

Unfortunately, this is a common situation with the younger generation, mainly because of the language barrier and for fear of being ignored.

To make matters worse, some seniors are not comfortable with strangers trying to start a conversation with them. As a result, many seniors get left out of society.

Nonetheless, if there's a will, there's a way. We can start with small daily acts of kindness - a simple "hi-bye" greeting would do - and build up towards helping elderly folk buy groceries. Every act of kindness goes a long way.

I hope more young people will take some time out from their busy schedules and step out of their comfort zone to reach out to the elderly who may be living in the shadows.

Jevyn Teo, 14

Secondary 2 student

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