Schooldirecteur bezoekt Planet Hope in Bangalore

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Willy Arends is the director of the college for Care and Wellbeing at ROC Mondriaan in The Hague, Netherlands. Here, students are studying to become caretakers for elderly and disabled people and children. Recently Willy visited Planet Hope in Bangalore.

What was the purpose of your visit to Planet Hope?
“I was invited to think along with Planet Hope and some Indian organizations about how to train Indian youngsters to become elderly caretakers. ROC Mondriaan has a lot of expertise in this field and I would like to share that with them so young people in India will benefit.”

What are your impressions of Indian elderly homes?
“First of all: if you want to work with the elderly, you have to have lots of love for them. And that’s what I saw. But also, you have to know about doing the right things to help them in the right way. I think ROC Mondriaan can contribute to that. I also noticed that there is a big difference between the rich and the poor. That also means a difference in what’s available for the elderly like how many people share rooms. On the other hand: the caretakers in the homes for the poor really worked from their hearts. It was quite impressive to see.”

What would be your advice to the old age organizations?
“My advice would be that they should invest in their staff so the elderly can benefit. In that way everybody benefits: the elderly of course, but also the caretakers can grow in their profession and as a person.”

What do you think of starting a diploma course for elderly caretakers?
“I think it is a wonderful idea! I think that it is important for young people to develop themselves and learn a profession. Everybody, the whole society, can benefit from that. The elderly of course, but also the youngsters. It is the best of both worlds when the young and the old improve the quality of their life.” Can you share the collaboration between ROC Mondriaan and Planet Hope?
“The ROC can help to build a curriculum for the elderly course. I believe that the way young people are trained is also important. That is why I would like to come back with some teachers from Holland to train the teachers in India. In this way, both the elderly and the young Indian students benefit from the program.”

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