Services are rendered to persons residing within the eThekwini municipality who are 55 years of age or older. The following services are offered:

  1. Counseling and Therapy by professional Social Workers
    1. Social Workers focus on enhancing life skills by improving communication, developing problem solving, conflict resolution and coping skills.
    2. Family therapy, marital counseling and pre-institutional care counseling are rendered.
    3. Supportive counseling is offered to assist with the changes associated with aging and the accompanying physical, cognitive and socio-emotional changes.
  2. Investigation of abuse and neglect
    1. Elderly abuse encompasses the following aspects:
      1. Physical Abuse: any act or threat of physical violence.
      2. Sexual Abuse: any conduct that violates sexual integrity; this including rape and harassment.
      3. Psychological Abuse: any pattern of rejection, degrading or humiliating.
      4. Economic Abuse: the deprivation of economic and financial resources to which one is entitled.
    2. Allegations of abuse and neglect received from the community, hospitals and other sources are investigated by Social Workers. Legislation is in place to protect and empower senior citizens: the revised Older Person's Act No. 13 of 2006. In accordance with this Act, abuse of the elderly should be reported to a Social Worker or to the police and the necessary actions will be taken against the perpetrator and to protect the senior citizen, who could be assisted to obtain a Protection Order from the local Magistrates Court - to order the abuser to refrain from any further abuse or face serious consequences.
    3. In cases of abuse and/or neglect, the perpetrator can be removed from the home.
  3. Home-based care and wheelchair hire (Assistive devices)
    1. These services not only enable access to home-based care and providing home-based care information, it also trains, educates and counsels family, the community and caregivers about aging and its challenges.
    2. Applications are processed for wheelchair hire; depending on availability, these applications are acceded or applicants are referred to other resources.
  4. Establishing, supporting & sustaining: Community based Senior Citizens Clubs & Centers
    1. The Senior Citizens Clubs and Services (Day care) Centers provide peer support, stimulation, empowerment and recreational activities for senior citizens.
    2. They are managed by dedicated volunteers who are elected by the members of these clubs and centers on an annual basis and are responsible for the day to day running of the clubs and centers.
    3. Social Workers monitor the functioning of these clubs and centers and render training, development and support.
  5. Processing Applications to Old Age Homes
    1. In cases of, but not restricted to, frailty, abandonment, abuse or neglect applications are made by senior citizens or on their behalf for placement at institutional care facilities (old age home).
    2. Social Workers investigate the circumstances of applicants, conduct an assessment (DQ98) as per departmental requirements and compile a detailed background report motivating the need for institutional care.
    3. These applications, with the accompanying documents, are then submitted to the institutional care facilities and applicants are placed on a waiting list. Depending on the institution, the process could take from six months up to two years.
  6. Poverty Alleviation - Capacity building, Training & Development
    1. Older persons are engaged in skills training and income generating programs. Activities include sewing, bead work, pillow/cushion making, food gardening and poultry farming. Participants are assisted with marketing products and sustaining those projects.
    2. Older persons are assisted with applications for old age Pensions and grants.
  7. Education and Empowerment
    1. Educational and informative talks/workshops given by, but not restricted to, Social Workers, Health Professionals and Attorneys, are arranged for the elderly at senior citizens clubs/centers/clinics.
    2. Awareness is created about senior citizen abuse, the access of resources and services, the aging process and healthy living.
  8. HIV/AIDS Programs
    1. Supportive services are rendered to those senior citizens who are living with HIV/AIDS. Support is also given to their families.
    2. The elderly are assisted to care for abandoned and/or orphaned children.
    3. The elderly are assisted/referred to access child support and/or foster care grants.