* Healthy Community for Seniors | A Brave New World For Seniors
* A Brave New World For Seniors  By Dr. Peter Huang

Retirement considerations for seniors

Using the life experiences I gathered over the years, my dreams and hopes are to develop a "Brave New World" for seniors.

When I was in the United States, three major considerations continually arose when discussing an ideal setting for seniors in a retirement home. The first consideration was a relaxing environment with moderate climate. The reason this was a factor is because the physiology of those in their geriatric years is less adaptable to rapid changes in extreme climates.

Readily accessible medical care is the second consideration. Often, seniors are not only faced with getting quality medical care. They also face the daunting task of traveling to get their medical treatment. As a part of the retirement home associated with our medical facilities, medical staff could easily treat and evaluate seniors due to their close proximity. Thus, any diificulties with traveling for their medical care are essentially minimized or eliminated.

Finally, friendships is also an extremely important consideration. As members of the retirement community, seniors would have a place where people of similar age and background can live together, share life experiences, and enjoy each other's company. Even planned excursions as a group to nearby areas can be psychologically enriching.

For these three main reasons, we were motivated to develop this "Brave New World."

From my experience, the most successful project of "A Brave New World" in Taiwan is the senior home located at SanJu, Taipei. The Christian fellowship runs the senior home. The residents of this facility have easy access to medical care. More importantly, the fellowship and the seniors have life experiences in common based on faith for the Lord and service to the Lord. They mutually benefit from this arrangement. Those in the fellowship enjoy the rewards of helping the weak and the sick. The seniors, on the other hand, benefit from the care and attention from those with a giving heart. Although they may have some differences in age, they have built enduring friendships through the fellowship of Jesus Christ.

Despite the remote location and limited transportation of the Hualien area, it is our hope to start our "Brave New World." The temperate climate and relaxing environment of Hualien combined with our fellowship of love and faith for Christ and each other make this an ideal senior community.

Natural surroundings, perfect for living and relaxation

Some people say Hualien is the last piece of unpolluted land in Taiwan. I believe it! The relatively minimal industrialization and fewer motorized vehicles have left Hualien relatively free of pollution. Anyone can equally enjoy the glory of the sun whether you are the street vendor, farmer or worker in Hualien. Residents of Hualien enjoy the gentle moonlight in the Butterfly Valley or on the Li-Yu Lake. We can marvel at the brilliance of the stars and the magical powers of fireflies, as if the two were communicating and composing a symphony. The natural wonders of Hualien form a tranquil atmosphere and inspired the development of a Living Community for the seniors of our community.

Rocks for thoughts, travelers return home

Legends have it that Hualien is the home of rocks. Hualien county is world famous for its marbles. The largest marble in Taroko National Park has been chiseled by rain and weather over thousands of years. Chingshui cliff found along Su-Hua Highway is a geological footprint molded with wind and waves of the Pacific Ocean on the Hualien coastal line. Shihtiping (Stone Stair pavilion) is a formation resulted from a thousand years of erosion by the Pacific Ocean. Seven Star Pond, a semi-circular structure with appearance of half a rock bowel, is embraced by the deep blue coastal water to provide a migration trail for the Mola Mola fish(曼波魚). The base of the pond is formed with Hualien rocks, which call for the weary travelers of Hualien to come home. These geological rock formations are visually stunning and absolutely breathtaking.

The International Stone Sculpture Art Show comes to Hualien every two years. Over 60 pieces of the sculptures are displayed in Hualien permanently. These sculptures are here to remind us of the voice and life of these rocks. The gentleness, sentimentality and romanticism of these rocks are also reasons for building a retirement home for the Hualien seniors.

Non-toxic horticulture for long healthy life style

Some people say that eating fruits and vegetables grown from non-toxic methods improves wellness. I believe it! When I visited large farming centers with beautiful and shiny produces back in the east, I could not help but take some home. My friend, however, warned me: " Those produces are for the big city folks." I was quite surprised and ignorant when I heard this. He told me the beautiful and shinny produces are grown with pesticides. These farmers are driven by demands in the big cities; thus, the farmers here cannot control what is being used to grown their produce." In contrast, Hualien government awards farmers who grow produces such as vegetables and rice without using pesticides. Consequently, these produces will promote health consciousness and the well being of the Hualien inhabitants. For this other reason, Hualien is a healthy reason to build a retirement home for the Hualien seniors.

Hope you can help our dreams take flight

Mennonite Senior Citizens Community is located on 32.8 acres of land. The shape of the land is wide-open and elevated. It is also narrower and lowered in the front of the land, respectively. Surrounding the land are chestnut-leaved oak trees(Takahasi) and campher tress that were natively grown. Among the trees, marble will be used to divide into various complexes. Neighboring to the trees will be the underground irrigation system, the electric towers and wires as well as casual walkways. The walkways are designed specifically for twilight strolling and exercise. Automobiles will not be access to this area so that the ambience of nature is retained and unaffected.

Flanking the other two sides of the Community is mild elevation. The central entrance is the administrative building with a fountain park next to it. The park's irrigation system will control the water level within the fountain. Within the fountain will include some natural habitats such as frogs and little egret. Furthermore, we will also construct a water-front church to allow Sunday services in front of the fountain.

The senior medical center will include health library and lecture halls to conduct health prevention lectures, arts and crafts workshops and horticulture gardens for outdoor therapies.

Come my friends, let us take this dream to flight. If we do this for the seniors today, aren't we doing for us tomorrow.


門諾logo Development Department, Mennonite Christian Hospital
44 Min-chuan Road, Hualien, 970 Taiwan Tel.:886-3-8241234
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