5 more estates get grant for features to help the elderly

5 more estates get grant for features to help the elderly
Madam Helen Lee has a new bedside light switch in her Bukit Merah View flat. She said she usually wakes up at least once a night and used to be afraid of falling or hitting against objects while moving in the dark.

Five more estates have been awarded the $50,000 City for All Ages grant to enhance their elderly-friendly features.

There had been eight applications for the remaining three grants this year, Dr Amy Khor, Senior Minister of State for Health told The Straits Times earlier this week.

But due to the quality of the proposals, the Ministry of Health (MOH) decided to award two more grants than budgeted for, she revealed.

The ideas that caught the attention of the City for All Ages committee, who come from the public, private and people sectors, include a "Seniors Academy" at Bukit Batok East where the teachers are themselves above 60 years of age.

Kembangan-Chai Chee wants to tie up with the Institute of Mental Health to keep depression in the elderly at bay, while MacPherson is looking at door-to-door health-screening for those who find it hard to move around.

Kampong Glam, meanwhile, will give small incentives to seniors whose health shows improvement through exercise.

Kreta Ayer-Kim Seng wants to replace the bamboo pole holders in rental flats to make it easier for the elderly to hang their laundry.

Dr Khor said she was quite surprised by the novelty of the ideas from the various towns, adding that they were beyond her expectations.

These five estates join the seven which got the grants in July, along with four others which were part of the pilot scheme since its launch in 2011.

The $50,000 grant, which is disbursed over two years, can be used for a range of improvements to support three key objectives: safety and security, health and wellness, and social support.

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