Sri Om Care launches its project on long day and short term overnight  respite care for elderly

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Sri Om Care has been running now, 10 years hence, through seven day care centres in Sydney metropolitan area for the Indian elderly where 400 people a week come and enjoy social platform as well as participate in activities that keep them happy, healthy and mentally active. The Foundation has come a long way and its workers provide a loving, caring environment for all which is homely. People are served with a smile by its staff   that is qualified and specialises in aged care. Currently Sri Om Care delivers 22 community respite programs on a monthly basis. Since the Indian population is growing with people who came in the seventies now entering into senior years they need respite for short term as well long term. Also there are newly arrived aged parents of recent migrants who need social interaction and care. Sri Om Care is fast becoming a provider of these services as it moves ahead in its aim to do just that and provide Indian-oriented care, food, entertainment, activities and outings for lonely seniors. On February 27 Sri Om Care organised an information dinner night and launched its project of Long day and Short Term Overnight respite at the Madison Function Centre in Dural.

The event was held in front of a strong crowd with a good mix of government delegates, service providers, business, community groups and the general public. There was great hospitality from the team at Madison who served up an excellent dinner, which was very well appreciated by the capacity crowd that exceeded 150 guests.

Special guests included Hon. Michelle  Rowland – Shadow minister for citizenship and multiculturalism, Mr. Steve Teulan ”“ Director of Uniting NSW and ACT, Hornsby Councilor Mr Gurdeep Singh, Sevinc Izmirli from PICAC NSW and Anne Kalra ”“ Aged care services manager from Uniting.

The evening started with the traditional lighting of the lamp by Sri Om’s long term supporter and senior, Mrs. Vijayalakshmi Vijayaraghavan, whilst Ms. Nitya Ramaswamy recited a short welcoming prayer. Sri Om’s People’s relations director, Ms. Vidya Raghavan, welcomed the guests and provided a detailed overview and plans for the night. There was a good mix of entertainment provided on the night with the ever charming Mr. Vinod Rajput, who mixed it up with acoustics, solo vocal and duet performances. The children from Meenaxi’s Dance Group provided a couple of astonishing dance performances which were very well received by the respectable audience.

Sri Om’s Chairperson HH Sri Om Adisakthiyendra Swamigal sent his apologies for being unavailable for the event but provided a message to the community which was read out by the Vice President – Mr. Jay Raman. His message stressed the importance of the community working in unity to provide selfless service to the needy. He also highlighted the progress made by the organisation over the last 10 years and was humbled by the positive support from everyone in the community.

Honorable Michelle Rowland MP, spoke about the great work that Sri Om has been doing for the past 10 years and individually congratulated every director and staff at Sri Om. She made special mention about the professionalism and transparency of Sri Om and said it is rare to find amongst community organisations. Keeping political allegiances aside, she requested the public to “keep aged care high on the agenda when going to the polls, as in the next 5 years, 1 in 3 elderly citizens will be born outside of Australia”. Highlight of the evening was kicked off by Sri Om’s Vidya Raghavan and Srini Vasudevan (Director ”“ Learning and Development), who walked through the concept of Long day care and short term overnight respite. The project proposal and plans to make it reality were discussed in detail through an eye-catching presentation, passionate dialogs and a breath taking video that showcased Sri Om’s abilities to deliver the project.

Ms. Raghavan echoed the need to get public financial support of $500,000 to deliver on this program. “If we get everyone in this room to just donate $1000, we would already be about 40 percent there,” she said.

Mr. Vasudevan expressed the importance of Sri Om in the community and how the community can work together to deliver this. He said, “It is Karma and what goes around comes around. We are actually doing this for ourselves more than anyone. We will end up being the care receivers in due course of time.”

Both the presenters reiterated that “Now is the time to act and tonight is the night to make it all happen”.

Mr. Raman Bhalla, independent financial planner, accountant and former candidate for NSW Liberal Party, spoke about Sri Om’s services and the governance and transparency of the organisation. He mentioned lenders and venture capitalists always look for certain aspects of a business for it to succeed and that “Sri Om ticks all of those boxes”.

The crowd was privileged to receive some wise words from Mr. Steve Teulan, Director for Uniting. He mentioned about the wonderful relationship between Sri Om and Uniting and that he has high expectations and is confident in the success of the proposal put by Sri Om.

The evening ended with a question and answer session from the enlightened audience and then a networking session amongst the group. The program was well received by the public and the overall consensus was to work hard together to make this project a reality.

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