Wednesday, November 14, 2007

An Aging Parent's Plea to his Child

An Aging Parent’s Plea to his Child
By Edecat
Inspired from an Article written in Pilipino by Rev Fr Ariel F Robles

As I grow old,
I seek your Patience and Understanding.
Despite Hard-of-Hearing – notwithstanding,
“Love me”. You’re told.

If I spill Soup or break Plate,
My Eyesight could be dimming.
Look upon me with no hate.
Lest, I get a bad feeling.

If I am slow to stand,
My Knees could be weakening.
Quickly give me your Hand,
For I did teach you - Walking.

If I’m slow to understand,
My Hearing could be failing.
Write down or Motion-by-Hand,
So I could get the meaning.

If I sound like a “Broken Record”,
My Memory could be lapsing.
Please do not laugh at me – nor be bored.
Bear with me - just by listening.

If I feel so alone,
My Spirit yearns for your presence.
Although busy at work,
Find time to be with me at home.

If I become hard-to-please,
My Consciousness favors the familiar.
Be careful and not amiss,
I’m exacting on particulars.
If I emit an unpleasant smell,
I could have the Odor-of-Old.
A daily Bath could make me unwell.
My weak Body could get a Cold.

If I urinate and move my bowel in bed,
Persevere still in loving me.
My Life is ending and farewells would soon be said.
Memories last Eternity.

And if my Moment-of-Death is near,
Hold my hand and embrace me dearly.
Your love for me brings “God’s Blessings” here.
You and I are truly family!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Felicidad Homes: Starting with Model 2 NOT Model 1?

01. My post in February 2006 ("Felicidad Homes Model 1 - A Home-for-the-Elderly: Concept & Economics") has elicited interest from some people. Some sent me emails asking if I could already accomodate their own Elders. Some also expressed their desire to be Founding Cooperators in my envisioned Cooperative-owned Home-for-the-Elderly. But still my search for the "Magic 30" as Founding Cooperators has yet to materialize. To pursue my envisioned "Model 1" needing P15 million Paid-up Capital, Founding Cooperators would have to invest P500K each with a targeted 100% ROI in 5 years.

02. My original "Opening Date" (3Q2006) has gone by. But I am not giving up. Instead, I now propose Model 2 as a down-sized version of Model 1. Consider:
  • Share Equity - P300K (M2) instead of P500K (M1)
  • Founding Cooperators - 15 persons (M2) instead of 30 (M1)
  • Lot Size - 240 sq meters (M2) instead of 2000 sq meter (M1)
  • Accomodation - 6 Single-Occupancy Dwelling-Units for Elder-Tenants (M2) not 30 (M1)
  • Marikina Location - MeteorHomes, Bgy Fortune (M2) not Bgy Mkna Hts (M1)
03. Given the same "Basic Package-of-Services" and its "Cost-of-Residency" (earlier defined in Model 1), it is appears that 100% ROI could be attained in 5 years - with the planned expansion of our Model 2 into other MetroManila Residential Subdivisions.

04. I plan to hold a "Brainstorming Session" for MetroManila-based prospective Founding-Cooperators before Year-end 2006 - probably at the Sagip-Ka Foundation Office, Marist School, Marikina City. If seriously interested to join our Cooperative, kindly send me an email at the soonest. God bless.


Thursday, July 06, 2006

Considering Retirement? By Jose G Caedo

For many Americans, retirement time is just around the corner. The prospect of trying to live on a pension, in old age is a daunting one. For some
, moving to retire in another country such as Mexico ( for North Americans) , or Portugal and Spain ( for Northern Europeans) is an option which
has been successful. But why not consider retiring in the Philippines?
Over the last decade, the Philippines has become a retirement haven for thousands of foreigners, particularly the Japanese, Korean, and Northern Europeans. Along
with Thailand and Malaysia, the Philippines developed communications, infrastructure, and service delivery systems specifically geared to meet the needs
of foreign retirees.
Theprincipal appeal for retirement in the Philippines is the lower cost of living. At present, the Philippine Peso ( PhP) exchange rate is approximately PhP 53/40 to
$1.00 . Housing, food, and labor costs are quite reasonable. A two bedroom condominium in one of the posh " villages" in Makati City costs about $400 per month. and one can dine out on average at a three star restaurant for less than $ 10.
including tax and tip. If you plan to hire domestic help, a private driver’s salary is approximately $ 200.- per month, while a trained housekeeper
will earn approximately $ 100.- month. These salaries are lower if you live in the provinces.
Watching a film in a first-run movie theater there costs only 25 cents, with a good light meal ( called " merienda") afterwards for about $2.00. One
can hire an air-conditioned taxicab for eight hours for less than $25.00. Or take the MRT momorail from end to end for less than $1.00.- And a
pair of locally made blue jeans costs less than $ 10.- IN a country where a provincial Governor’s salary is PHP 28,000 per month, and a Presidential Cabinet
Under-Secretary earns PhP 35,000, your pension can go a long way. So, if you have an individual retirement income of approximately $1,500 to $2,000 per month ( PhP 80,000 to 100,000.-) you can live quite well
there. Incidentally, Peso-denominated Time Deposit interest rate now is %4.5 for forty-five days.
AS for health care, most U.S. Health Management Organizations pay for medical expenses incurred in the Philippines. Check with your HMO. The Philippine Department
of Foreign Affairs presntly has a task force headed by former Secretary Roberto Romulo working to have the U.S. government accredit a number of first
class Philippine hospitals for Medicare reimbursement. The Makati Medical Center, one of the nation’s best already has such accreditation. Unbeknownst
to many is that for years, citizens of nearby countries such as Thailand, Nauru, Tonga, Indonesia, and Malaysia have flocked to the Philippines for
medical care, particularly sensitive surgical procedures. The quality of medical care at the better Manila hospitals such as the Asian, St. Luke’s, Medical
city, Cardinal Santos, Philippine Heart Center for Asia, National Kidney Institute, and Makati Medical Center meets international standards. Ihave been
treated by American Surgeons in San Francisco who have been to the Philippines where they performed surgical procedures. These Surgeons have a high opinion
of the Philippine Doctors, nurses, and facilities they worked with. Heart, Liver, Kidney, Pancreatic, and Cornea transplants are done routinely in the
better Manila hospitals.
A Japanese company will be building a medical facility in Tagaytay city exclusively for Japanese nationals within the year. There are now close to 10,000 Japanese retirees
in the country, and the number is growing annually. The British government recently acquired a large tract of land in Fort Bonifacio to build a large
Embassy. The British ambassador explained that larger facility is meant to help serve the growing number of British nationals retiring there as
well. There are also Japanese and Korean investment groups buying homes and condominiums in Manila, and tracts of provincial land for retirees. This has caused
a mini- Real Estate boom in the country. A retirement village exclusively for Japanese nationals already exists in Tagaytay, and more are planned. These
are strong indicators of what is on the horizon
English is the Philippines’ official business language. Most of the people you will meet, from hotel workers, taxi drivers, sales or service people, government
employees--- speak English, or have a working understanding of it. The middle class speak English, without exception.
All the major newspapers, and major broadcast companies use English. An English speaking visitor will never get lost in
the Philippines. It is the universal use of that language that has been a strong incentive to foreigners. As well,
communications links within the country and to other countries via the various commercial gateways is up to international standards. For example, the
use of cell phones and text messaging is so common that housemaids, street vendors and sidewalk food hawkers can be seen using their cel phones incessantly.
And for just Php 1/ 00 per message, why not? Are you thinking of bringing household goods over? Your electrical appliances will work using
the local electrical outlets, which provide either 220 V, or 110 V sources.
Just ask.
One will never want for adventure and sights to experience in the Philippines. There is always a colorful Fiesta, pageants, street festivals, and open public events going on. Lush with bountiful natural
resources, one can enjoy the numerous beaches, resorts, golf courses, and play just about any sport, except skiing. There is an ice skating rink in
Manila, though. Scuba diving and fishing are among the sports which draw the most number of foreigners to the rich aquatic offerings.,
Shopping is the Filipinos’ second most popular activity, the first is eating. Manila is Asia’s undiscovered shopping Mecca. You will love the golden purple sunsets, the fragrance of the flowers
at dusk, and the wonderful array of fruit and food. I used to enjoy watching the Sun set from the bar at the Philippine Cultural Center. There, you can listen to the Symphony, check out a play, or enjoy Grand Opera. There is just so much to explore and discover, specially in terms of nature, culture, and history.
If you’re a betting man, there’s horse racing, the Jai Alai, numerous first class casinos, and of course, cok-fighting. Manila is well known for its exciting night life.
Strategically located, the Philippines is an airline hub. Hong Kong, Ho Chi Minh city, Kuala Lumpur, and TaiPei are just an hour and a half flight away. With Tokyo, Shanghai, Bangkok, and Jakarta approximately five hours. There are regular flights to those destinations from Manila’s three international terminals.
Philippine Real Estate, medical/ social service, and Employment agencies are now working together under the aegis of the government’s Philippine Retirement Authority ( PRA)
to set up standards and make the retirement industry truly world class. The PRA website is main . Under the direction of Gen. Edgar B.Aglipay, chairman of the Philippine Retirement
Authority, plans have been operationalized to ensure that the growing demand for housing and ancillary services for the
retirees are met. The objective is to turn the country into the retirement haven in Asia. This will also help employ more local Filipinos at higher wages so that they need not leave the country
to seek work.
Visit the land of fun, flowers, food, fruit, and friendly people. You might not want to leave it anymore. Mabuhay!
Copyright Jose Caedo 2006

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Retiring in the Philippines ... anyone? By Perry Diaz

I find this article likely of interest to USA-based Overseas Filipinos &/or Fil-Ams planning ahead and envisioning their "Last Years". Please visit this website -

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

FelicidadHomes Philippines - Concept & Economics

01. My envisioned Felicidad Homes (a Home-for-the-Elderly) is meant to be a "Caring Community" sensitive and responsive to the individual concerns of its solo-living Resident-Tenants living out their respective "Last Years" in a specially-designed seniors' housing facility. While Resident-Tenants shall share Common Function Areas (mess hall, open-air exercise grounds, walk-aisle front corridor, prayer room, conference room, visitors' lounge, parking spaces, storage room, library, etc), each shall have their Private Room provided with its own single bed, toilet/bath & sink, telephone extension, TV, PC, tables & chairs, back-room mini garden. Senior-Diet Meals (3x/da), Caregiving Service (1:10 @ 24hrs x 7da), Laundry (2x/week), Physical Therapy (2x/week), Hobby-Group Activities (3x/week), Sunday Mass (1x/week), specialist Medical/Spiritual/Legal Private Consultations (1x/week) shall be made available to all its Resident-Tenants as part of "Service Package # 1" costing U$30/da/senior. More intensive Healthcare Service Packages could be negotiated on a case-to-case. Accomodation shall be exclusive to Seniors - Filipinos and Foreigners.
02. As a starter, Felicidad Homes # 1 shall be a ground-level Seniors' Housing Facility inside a 2000 M2 fully fenced lot [with 10 Private Rooms (on each of the 3 sides) and Function Areas (on the 4th side) leaving the Center as Open-air Exercise Grounds] to be sited in Barangay Marikina Heights, Marikina city, Metro Manila, Philippines. Apart from the secured clean and green ambiance of Marikina Heights, its proximity to the following: [St Gabriel Catholic Parish Church-cum-Columbary(1.5 km); Rustan's Supermart (1.5 km); Marikina City Hall & Post Office (4.o km); Marquinton new Entertainment/Food/Shopping Center (4.0 km); an upcoming Tertiary-level Hospital; LGU Marikina-owned Butterfly Farm (1.5 km); Marikina 3-star Tourist Hotel (2.o km)] thus makes Marikina Heights an ideal location for Senior Residency. With Felicidad Homes # 1 as a successful model, it may likely be that a chain network of Felicidad Homes (not less than 5 around Metro Manila) could be operational by Yr 2010 - or even sooner. This expansion could be funded from Retained Earnings, from Share Equity of increasing membership, and from Grants of Filipino and Foreign Benefactors caring for the Elderly.
03. Felicidad Homes shall be a duly registered Service Cooperative in the Philippines with at least 30 Filipino Founding Members contributing P500K each as Share Capital. The Paid-up Capital of P30 million shall be allocated as follows: P12 million (Fixed Asset - Land & Building) + P3 million Operating Capital. Apart from the projected 100% ROI in 5 years (or sooner), Founding Members could be entitled to "Preferential" Rates &/or Service Packages - if and when they themselves become FH Resident-Tenants in their own respective "Last Years".
04. To-date, I have 5 committed prospects as Founding Members of Felicidad Homes Cooperative. It is my hope that the "Magic 30" would be complete by May 2006 - or earlier. If God willing, Felicidad Homes could be "Open-for-Occupancy" by 3Q2006. Are you joining?

Friday, December 30, 2005

The British are coming!

Top Management of ABBEYFIELD International are visiting the Philippines for "Exploratory Talks" with some enterprising Filipinos planning to venture into the growing Seniors' Care Industry (now a "felt need" also in the Philippines) in select locations. It is believed that this specialty Service Industry would gain much from the benefits of worldwide affiliation.

Richard & Co are scheduled to meet with us in Marikina City on January 10-11, 2006. Given the opportunity, we probably could arrange for them t0 give a 1-hr FREE "Orientation Talk" sharing ABBEYFIELD's worldwide expertise on Seniors' Housing & Healthcare.

Anyone interested must quickly send an email to -

Sunday, November 27, 2005

The Elderly in the Philippines: Excerpts from a Study by Josefina N. Natividad and Grace T. Cruz - Yr 1996

  • The Elderly are a vulnerable group in the face of rapid Social and Economic Changes. The pool of available sources of Familial Support has been diminished due to: (1st) Fertility Decline bringing about fewer Adult Children who could be depended upon by the Elderly and (2nd) Urbanization & Migration leading to the abandonment of the Elderly;
  • The Elderly are not passive recipients of support from Children. Rather they are active participants in a web of exchanges that puts them in the significant role of being providers of support - not just to their children, but also, to their Grandchildren. More than 90% of the Elderly care for a Grandchild;
  • Living Arrangements of the Elderly and their Sources-of-Support reveal a predominant pattern of Co-Residence with their Kin - although many of the Elderly would prefer to live independently because of the strains that Dependency causes on both sides;
  • Of the Elderly living alone, Females predominate in this group - a reflection of their higher survivorship;
  • Living in a "Home-for-the-Aged" is a choice few families make for their Elderly - partly perhaps because of lack of it. The Study shows that there is more openness to the idea of "Homes-for-the-Aged" as being necessitated by ongoing Social and Demographic Changes.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Is this "Home-for-the-Elderly" costly?

01. Mother had always wanted a residential place where peace and privacy prevailed. This she had throughout her solo "Independent Life" - and even more so, during her fully "Dependent Life". The Family House (which she built in Project 4, Quezon City) was her home from Yr 1953 - and even until death in April 2002. She died in her sleep in her own bed in the silence of her own house - without the presence of her Children who have families of their own residing elsewhere. This is how she wanted to die - in peace and in privacy.
02. In the course of time, MANILA (the original center of Commerce, Communication, Transport, Education, Entertainment, etc.) gradually expanded to encompass neighboring towns and cities - and ultimately became known as Metropolitan Manila. Alongside the growth of the metropolies to accomodate the continuing increase in population, city dwellers relocated to residential subdivisions in the suburbs. MARIKINA (the "Shoe Capital of the Philippines") gradually transformed into a well-planned multi-awarded city. Barangay Marikina Heights (located in the sparsely populated hillside slopes of the Sierra Madre Mountain Range East-of- Manila and situated about 5 kms NorthEast from Marikina City Proper) came to be the geographic political entity of what started, in the early 1960s, to be the privately-owned circularly-developed road-network Marikina Heights Subdivision. Moreover -
  • Barangay Marikina Heights is host to the Catholic Parish of St Gabriel (of Our Lady of Sorrows) with its upcoming imposing centrally-located Church-cum-Columbary; to St Scholastica Academy (an exclusive school for girls), Marist School (an exclusive school for boys), and many other schools; to about 10 Catholic Religious Communities (Formation & Retirement); to C&P S'mall where Rustan's Supermart, Jollibee, McDonald's are frequently patronized; to Shell Gasoline Station; to various Handicrafts/Garden Supplies/Garment Exporters; to a Butterfly DemoFarm; and to many others.
  • Barangay Marikina Heights residents are serviced (for a Fee) by the gov't-regulated franchised concessionares (Meralco Light, ManilaWater, PLDT Telephone, Tricycle Transport) - and are Gov't-provided (for free) Garbage collection, Emergency Ambulance, etc.
  • Barangay Marikina Heights road network is mostly cemented - with an increasing mileage of Pedestrian Sidewalks and of Biking Lane.
  • Barangay Marikina Heights has a well-maintained "Clean and Green Environment".

03. Felicidad Homes # 1 shall be located in Barangay Marikina Heights about 1 km from the St Gabriel Parish Church-cum-Columbary; about 1.5 kms from the Barangay Hall and from the C&P S'Mall; about 4.5 kms from the upcoming Tertiary-level Multi-Specialty Hospital; about 5 kms from the City Hall, from the City Sport Complex, from the newly opened Marquinton Food/Cinema/Shopping Center; about 5.5 kms from the Marikina River Park.

04. Felicidad Homes # 1 shall be a specially-designed "Home-for-the-Elderly" for 30 Dependent Seniors provided with individual private quarters (w/ T&B, TV set, Landline Phone, PComputer w/ Internet Connectivity) - and with an appropriate Package-of-Services. The "Basic Package" (Board & Lodging - inclusive of 3xDay Meals, of 2xWeek Laundry, of 2xWeek PT professional service, of 7x24/1:10 Caregiving Service, of 1xWeek Medical consultation) would cost U$ 30/day per Resident-Tenant. A "Special Package" could be negotiated on a Case-to-Case basis.

05. Felicidad Homes # 1 is envisioned to be "Open-for-Occupancy" by 3Q2006 - or earlier.

Dependent Seniors are welcomed!

01. Mother gave me Life - but more than Life, she showed me the value of Caring-for-Others. Under her lifelong tutelage, little did I realize that I would eventualy take charge of Mama's Healthcare during her last 2 years of full dependency.
02. Mama died in Yr 2002, in her sleep, in her bed, in her home, at the Old Age of 84 yrs old. As she valued Privacy, Frugality, and Freedom, she chose to live all by herself all throughout her Lifetime - except the last 2 years. In Yr 2000, Rommel (my Son who was asked by Mama to live with his Wife and Daughter in the other house inside Mama's 2-house Residential Compound) co-incidentally caught sight of Mama vomitting blood and had to rush her to hospital. Mama was diagnosed to have a "glass stomach" caused by the overdose of Pain-killing Drugs prescribed by doctors for her Rheumatic Condition. Mama's failing memory caused the Drug Overdose brought about by self-medication. Returning back to her house (coming from the hospital) Mama reluctantly accepted the new reality that she had transformed from a Fully-Independent into a Fully-Dependent Elderly. Thereafter, Mama had to have 2 full-time (on 12-hrs rotation) Caregivers living-in with her. Her Caregivers prepared Mama's Meals, helped her with her Personal Necessities (in and out of the Bathroom), walked her in the sunlight around the yard, and saw to the timely taking of her Medicines. Despite the personal attention given her, Mama was gradually loosing Taste-for-Life - and was entering into a different Time Zone. Her waking hours would be Nightime - while she would mostly be asleep during the Daytime. Oftentimes, she would pine for the frequent visits of her Sons & Daughters - but, would want them out quickly because she believed that Time was "too costly" for them. She had lived a most challlenging life - all by herself and all for her children. And, as all her children were living separate lives of their own, she appeared lonely - with little purpose for Life.
03. I did entertain the thought of transfering Mama to a "Home-for-the-Elderly". I thought that if Mama were to relocate in a Community-of-Elders, she would probably find Friends-of-her-Kind. To my surprise, Government-owned facilities accepted only those seniors considered abandoned and destitute. The one and only Privately-owned Senior Community Home near to her Children's Residences and to her Choice-of-Hospital was not only fully booked - but even, over-booked. Incidentally, I also found some Foreigner Resident-Tenants in that house. The House Manager even encouraged me to put up another Senior Community Home purposely for Filipino Seniors living in the City.
04. As I see the day to come for me and those of my Generation blessed with a long life, wanting to live out our Last Years in a Community-of-Friends (similarly situated), I hope to get together a group sharing my vision of building a well-designed ground-level simple "Home-for-the-Elderly" providing 30 individual private modestly-equipped quarters inside a 2000 M2 fully secured residential compound located near the center of Barangay Marikina Heights (Marikina City, Philippines) - purposely for the Dependent Senior Resident-Tenant. I plan to have this Gov't-encouraged "Special Facility" ready for occupancy within Yr 2006.
05. Are you with me?