- A story of an older couple who found the opportunity to rekindle the flame of love at the Ciudad Bolivar day care center.
- The city of Ciudad Bolivar has five day centers that offer care to the elderly through a component of nutrition, culture, recreation, physical and cognitive health.
Bogota, DC, September 15, 2022. Carlos Alberto Ramirez and Helia Jimenez are an elderly couple who met 45 years ago in Bogotá. Love came without warning, then Cupid struck them at a time when love and romanticism were a source of inspiration; Three children and seven grandchildren were born from this love.
For more than 30 years, this couple has lived in the Paraíso neighborhood of Ciudad Bolivar, a place where they share their children’s education, watch them grow up, see each other as a family, travel, work, support and tolerate each other; but as in any couple, unfavorable situations arise that over the years manage to worsen coexistence and even cause separation.
And this is what happened to this couple about five years ago, after they decided to separate, Carlos and Helia made a kind of contract to maintain good friendship and mutual care.
More than eight months ago, on the recommendation of a resident of the Paraíso district, this couple began to visit the day centers offered by the Sub-Directorate of Social Integration of Ciudad Bolivar, a place where they share their daily lives again, but now, with new experiences in the stage of your old age.
With the stay at Bella Flor Day Center, this former partner’s relationship improved, thanks to the accompanying processes of the professionals and one activity or another that allowed them to exchange glances and dig into their hearts the feeling of admiration and love they still felt .
“The best thing about being at Centro Día Bella Flor is that you learn things that you don’t know right now and have never learned. The teachers at Centro Día are very elegant people, they always talk to us with a lot of education, with a lot of respect , just as we should respect them,” emphasizes Carlos, who, after devoting so many years to his work and raising his children, today enjoys a whole agenda of activities that I never imagined sharing and, very more, next to his beautiful Helia.
Oneys Santander, coordinator of Centro Día Bella Flor tells us that “together we strengthen the dimension of aging, this dimension is focused and important because the elderly deserve to grow old in a family environment. We found that this older couple between Carlos and Helia retains many values that teach us day by day to overcome these adversities in life and we try to guide and accompany them so that they can be that couple in love again”.
Both of them share this new experience in the Day Center, managing to get closer, understand their problems, mistakes and change them. Every Tuesday, this space opens meetings for psychosocial support through conversations and meetings of couples, in which they address issues of strengthening emotional connections, confident communication, coping with difficult situations, among other topics.
As the days pass, the relationship manages to enter a process of consolidation, meetings become more frequent, support each other, listen to each other and understand each other, perhaps as in the past. Now they see each other in the Day Center gatherings, meet their classes very close and actively participate in extramural studies.
In collaboration with the Ministry of Health, Carlos and Helia participated in a workshop for promoters of emotional well-being, which helped them improve coexistence, situation management, emotions and transform imagination regarding life as an elderly couple; Now they reflect more the moments of fear and the way out of problems.
“The message I send to all the people of Ciudad Bolivar is that they connect with everything that is from Centro Dia and Social Integration, so that they are always with them and cooperate with us, just as they cooperate with me and many more” Highlights of Carlos.
At Centro Día Bella Flor, both receive interdisciplinary attention through components of nutrition, culture, recreation, physical and cognitive health, allowing them to strengthen their skills in dance, social participation and crafts, so much so that for the month of Aging and Old Age, held last August, involved activities that attracted a large flow of people.
For example, Helia, at the closing event, designed and made her queen outfit, with which she was able to reveal all her imagination, creativity and knowledge. In the words of Helia Jimenez, this center “As such, it is an institution where, for us adults, old age is something that serves us well. I speak in the company of all my colleagues, for example I liked it for many reasons”.