Chinese people may be thrifty most of the time, but they seem pretty generous in their spending habits during their traditional festivals. For example, they buy everyone in their family new clothes for the Lunar New Year festival, whether they need it or not. Nice to see such kindness evolve in families.
Then there will be others who not just give love to their own families, but go the extra mile by showing care and concern to those outside their own families and this was so apparent when I read the report in The Straits Times (ST) of a gusto kind-hearted 71-year-old woman in Madam Lucy Ying who did not hesitate to spring into action when she witnessed 64-year-old Mr Tang Siew Loon suffer a heart attack at an event in Eunos last October (“Great-granny’s ‘kiss of life’ saves man”, Saturday 28 January 2017, The ST).
When she saw first-hand Mr Tang’s face turn purple and his fists clenched with his wife shouting his name and crying hysterically, Madam Ying administered the kiss of life techniques, not bothered if she was a woman who had to carry out the technique to a man. Her only concern was that a life had to be saved.
Madam Ying is a very special citizen and has virtues which we can all emulate. At the age of 71 she still believes in life-long learning. She watches television not just to entertain herself, but to learn new things. For example, she mentioned in the press report that she watches a lot of dramas on TV to equip herself with new skills that can save lives. She also goes on Facebook to understand how resuscitation can revive a person who has a life-threatening experience.
It was indeed a blessing in disguise for Mr Tang when Madam Ying saved him. After his admission at the hospital, doctors discovered that the 64-yer-old has five blocked arteries, including three major ones. Mr Tang revealed he had to undergo an angioplasty, with stents inserted into two of his arteries.
For her civic mindedness, Madam Lucy Ying was presented with a certificate for “extraordinary personal action” by the Eunos Senior Citizens’ Executive Committee Chairman Tan Jun Hong. This positive attitude of constantly looking out for one another needs to be promoted at all levels.
To this end, perhaps, the Community Centre (CC) or Residents’ Committee (RC) where she resides can take it one step further by inviting her to share her ‘kiss of life’ techniques to the residents which will enable more lives to be reclaimed and saved if such a scenario ever takes place. SCDF staff could also be on hand to add value to this life -saving education.
In addition, all CCs or RCs island-wide could include such education during their on-going events, stressing the importance of life-long learning that brings a whole range of benefits.
What are the benefits of Life-long learning?
(a) Lifelong learning helps keep our minds sharp.
(b) An active mind through lifelong learning can stimulate physical activity and keep our spirits high.
( c ) Lifelong learning is like a health club for our brain.
(d) Lifelong learning creates a curious, hungry mind
(e) Lifelong learning helps us make new friends and establish valuable relationships.
(f) Lifelong learning leads to an enriching life of self-fulfillment
With an ageing population facing us, it is vital for all our citizens to embrace lifelong learning so that we will be able, as one nation, to overcome any of the challenges coming on-stream.
RAYMOND ANTHONY FERNANDO