Seniors: Society’s best-kept secret
The narrow image of elderly people in the media always bothers me. While well-represented as a group, this image does not accurately reflect reality. And I’m well-placed to know! It’s true that some seniors are more vulnerable than others, but many are quick-witted, active, passionate and full of inspiring energy. These are the seniors I saw get up on stage on July 18, 2019 during the Gala des retraités at the Monument National theatre. Seniors are society’s best-kept secret and it’s time to let that secret out.
To do so, we need more events like the Gala des retraités, organized as part of the Festival Juste pour seniors. We had the opportunity to see ten of our residents put on a wonderful stand-up comedy act. I salute their bravery, especially given that some were performing onstage for the very first time. What a feat! I am proud of this partnership with the Just for Laughs Festival. Seniors have so much to offer and I’ll always be the first to encourage such initiatives, initiatives that give seniors the place they deserve in society and change how seniors are perceived.
I sincerely believe that we must, as a society, offer more such forums to the elderly, so they can share their stories, memories and ideas and help us all get to know them better. The beauty of the Gala des retraités is that this type of event showcases an extraordinary aspect of seniors that few people talk about.
That’s why I will always be interested and will never stop motivating my teams to come up with new ways to show a different view of seniors. They’re not at all different from us, except for their age! Seniors are important members of Quebec society and have value beyond measure! They deserve to be demystified and recognized for who they really are. Seniors are not “also” comedians, painters or great cooks, they are MAINLY that! They are people, like you and me, who want to feel alive, express themselves, experiment, and laugh!
In closing, I believe that on July 18, 2019, more than 500 people either had their view of seniors shifted or strengthened, because our residents admirably demonstrated that age comes second to passion.
To the ten participants, I want to say congratulations once again. You are a model of strength and courage and a deep source of admiration and inspiration for me.
Long live the Gala des retraités!