Top 5 This Week

Related Posts

Preparing You For A Happy New Age

How many senior citizens we know have felt their lives stalling as it were after retirement, or after crossing the threshold of stereotypical ‘active life’? How many among them have felt a sense of loneliness and boredom setting in, with children in most cases no longer living with them and the normal routines of their working lives shattered?

Not-for-profit start-up Grey Shades, registered as a charitable trust, is offering such senior citizens a paid 100-day ‘Seniors Fellowship Programme’ aimed at ridding them of retirement sickness and renewing, revitalising and repurposing their lives.

The non-governmental organisation has so far successfully run three batches, helping 45 individuals, including couples, to become the best version of their selves and enabling them to continue to make useful contributions to their families and the society.

Preparing You For A Happy New Age, Lifeinchd

Photos By: Life In Chandigarh & Grey Shades

Four beneficiaries from the third batch of the age-leadership and well-being programme, in the accompaniment of Grey Shades founder Inderpreet Singh and other young facilitators, recently shared their little joys and large accomplishments of the six-month, four-days-a-week programme with media persons in Chandigarh. The programme is run at the Sector 18 Community Centre.

Grey Shades fellowship helps senior citizens with various methodologies and activities of the programme like group sessions, dance movement therapy, expression through art and craft, writing therapy, food and nutrition, digital literacy, mindfulness, yoga and meditation.

The fourth batch of the 100-days fellowship programme, which will enrol a maximum of 20 participants, began at the Sector 18 Community Centre today (May 15). Seniors desirous of joining can still enrol against a few vacancies left on the spot between 4 p.m.-6 p.m. or they can message or call on the Grey Shades WhatsApp number 888-111-8522.

About the participants’ contribution for enrolment into the fellowship programme, Inderpreet informed, “it dependents on which category a particular participant falls. The fee is 8% to 15% of a participant’s monthly earnings per month with a ceiling of Rs 8500 per month during the course of the six months programme, the highest percentage being for those who are pensioners without any dependents. However, other considerations do come into play looking at an individual’s affordability factor, he added.

Currently Indepreet is heading a team of 7 like-minded young professionals and facilitators who are sincerely doing their bit to ameliorate senior citizens’ problems. Apart from this team, a host of professionals from various fields work with the participants on honorariums, which currently are below par because of financial constraints which the not-for-profit organization continues to face.

Grey Shades is continuing to make concerted efforts to increase public donations for the programme, which Inderpreet said are entitled to 50% tax exemption for all Indian donors.

Preparing You For A Happy New Age, Lifeinchd

Rita Sodhi, an office superintendent who had to take premature retirement during the peak of the Covid pandemic due to co-morbidities, and felt depressed due to complete dependence and boredom, says the programme has helped transform her life. “Being part of a group where no one was judgemental and all were equals while participating in various innovative and interactive routines immensely changed my outlook towards life.

“Now I am not only paying greater attention and loving myself but also teaching children. Visiting villages and indulging in activities like song and dance with children have become an integral part of a new happy me,” she added.

For retired government forensic sciences expert Dr Devinderpal Singh Sehgal, among other life changing learnings, the 100-day experience was akin to reliving the joyous days of childhood, playing games like kho-kho, chidi-udh, etc.

Sehgal, who is also an internationally recognised kite maker with a Limca Book of Records entry for making the smallest kite which can pass through the eye of a needle, shared: “The mandatory 400 hours of community service was a wonderful and self-fulfilling way of giving back to society. Seeing the smiles on the faces of underprivileged children with whom I indulged in learning, dancing and singing, and also distributed my self-made kites added joy to my life.” 

Artistically-oriented, but hugely shy and introverted Veena Khanna, whose entire life revolved around the kitchen and looking after the family, is now all smiles and brimming with enthusiastic energy. Having run the 100-day programme with her husband, she has not only rekindled her love for music by beginning to record her songs but has also successfully tried her hands at doll-making.

Associating herself with a tricity NGO Chhoti Si Asha, she has undertaken cookery session with underprivileged women, following which these women have ventured into catering business. She also plans to hold music and doll-making classes for them – another example of living your dreams and helping spread smiles around.

Naresh Mehta, a retired Under Secretary with the Haryana government, said, after superannuation, life appeared to come to a standstill for him. “The office-going daily routine was broken. To pass time I was constantly searching for sources of entertainment but the void would not fill. After experiencing every nuance of the fulfilling structured programme I feel that the gate to post retirement happiness has been opened for me.”

The programme goals for the participants are active healthy life, emotional management and happiness, productive and meaningful engagement and regaining confidence and self esteem.

The scientifically developed programme is split into four terms of 25 days each – awareness to exploration, understanding to experimentation, expression to self transformation and self transformation to community transformation.

Seniors desirous of joining the fellowship can message or call on the Grey Shades WhatsApp number 888-111-8522

For further details:  by APR Media House is an enjoyable digital reading startup, which keeps you abreast of the latest meaningful happenings of interest to large sections of folks in Chandigarh tricity, and expats from the region. It has been promoted by a public spirited senior journalist and media consultant with a view to encourage good quality and healthy journalism, a dire need of the times.

To keep in touch, drop an email or call :

Popular Articles