Young at heart

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - SENIOR -

Christ­mas). Mem­bers also host get-to­geth­ers with chil­dren from or­phan­ages, the dis­abled and the el­derly from old folks homes. Its choir per­formed at MBPJ’s Chi­nese New Year celebration in 2012 and at MBPJ’s Se­nior Cit­i­zens Day. On Dec 8, the choir will per­form at the Com­mu­nity Care Car­ni­val in Pe­tal­ing Jaya, co-or­gan­ised by the Ro­tary Club of Gom­bak, Car­ing Cit­i­zens of Kota Da­mansara and Trop­i­cana Med­i­cal Cen­tre.

“It’s vi­tal to have a good so­cial life. Through th­ese ac­tiv­i­ties, mem­bers can keep learn­ing and have fun do­ing what we en­joy most. Essen­tially, it is all about stay­ing healthy and alert as we age,” said Yong, who keeps fit by at­tend­ing taichi and body ton­ing classes held by the as­so­ci­a­tion.

Healthy pur­suits

For­mer RTM Ra­dio 5 con­troller Yoong Ee Fah, 70, is liv­ing proof that age is just a num­ber when it comes to ac­quir­ing knowl­edge and new skills. She lives by the adage “Live life to the fullest” and be­lieves that age should never be a hin­drance to the pur­suit of knowl­edge.

For the past three years, Yoong has been putting her skills to good use by teach­ing Man­darin lessons at Secita.

The mother-of-three en­joys teach­ing stu­dents at the as­so­cia- tion, stat­ing there is noth­ing more ful­fill­ing than giv­ing back to the com­mu­nity.

“I en­joy teach­ing as I have been a voice trainer and lan­guage coach in RTM for over 40 years,” said Yoong, who was also a TV news­caster, ra­dio an­nouncer and host of the pop­u­lar 1970s tal­ent search TV show Bin­tang RTM, cook­ing se­ries Ke­suma and Den­dang Rakyat, a pro­gramme on tra­di­tional mu­sic.

“Af­ter re­tire­ment, I de­cided to use my lan­guage skills and con­trib­ute to so­ci­ety. The great­est joy is see­ing my stu­dents speak­ing the lan­guage pro­fi­ciently and be­ing able to read Man­darin,” said Yoong.

The classes (be­gin­ners and in­ter­me­di­ate Man­darin) are con­ducted once a week in which Yoong guides over 20 stu­dents per class on con­ver­sa­tional Man­darin and how to write com­plete sen­tences.

Be­sides teach­ing, Yoong has en­rolled in Latin dance classes and choir lessons at Secita. She says th­ese ac­tiv­i­ties keep her mind ac­tive and en­able her to make good use of her time to so­cialise with her peers.

“Th­ese ac­tiv­i­ties keep me on my toes. It is im­por­tant for re­tirees to keep ac­tive and make the best out of life.

“In­stead of idling time away at home, se­nior cit­i­zens should get out of the house, make new friends, sign up to learn new skills and par­tic­i­pate in ac­tiv­i­ties that can keep them ac­tive,” said Yoong, who also at­tends Ja­panese lessons and goes for karaoke ses­sions.

For more in­for­ma­tion on Secita, call 03-7806 3303 (Puan Siti Fa­timah Yatin) or go to http:// my­

choir singers from the as­so­ci­a­tion per­form­ing at mbPJ’s chi­nese New year cel­e­bra­tions.

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