Thursday, July 12, 2012

Wanting to Better the Life of the Elderly

Many, late in life, feeling a need for more education to do their work well, decide to go on for added studies. The Peace Weekly tells us of Monica, who worked  with poor and alienated women, and who decided, in her 50s, to go to Japan to get a doctorate in gerontology.

After 13 years, not knowing any Japanese when she started, she got her degree. Her dissertation was an exhaustive study of the Korean history of work with the elderly. She will translate it into Korean and plans to publish it in the future. At her age, to go on for a doctorate in another country, unfamiliar as she was with the language, is not something easy to image. Next year, she will be teaching at the Catholic University, which will make her life even busier.

She admitted to wanting to give up many times, but she overcame the difficulties and persevered with her studies, receiving help from many during her time in Japan, and has many to thank, she says. She now has the qualifications of a first-grade social worker, care-giver.  She saw a need to gain knowledge regarding the needs of the  elderly and made her decision to become a specialist in the field.

She has been  a leader in the Catholic Workers Movement and began  a home for women, becoming a Godmother to many. She received education in many different areas of study, and earned a master's degree in women's studies. She  aspires to starting a group home exclusively for the elderly with the necessary cultural accompaniments. Following England's example, she would also like to see restaurants that cater to the needs of the elderly, not only as places where they can eat and drink tea, but where they can get counseling and  enjoy their leisure time.

Her goal will continue to be, she says, to use her knowledge to further the well-being of  the elderly in Korea.


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