“Whatever will come in the future, don’t run – we say in Moluccan”
Juan is Moluccan and chairman of LSMO, the National Foundation of Elderly Moluccans in the Netherlands. He tells us what it means to age in the Moluccan culture.
In the Moluccan language, there is a proverb: “Apa datang dari muka, jangan undure”. Literally, it means “whatever will come in the future, don’t run“. We also have this proverb that says “Orang tua-tua sebagai sombar untuk kami: elderly people protect us with a shield, they keep us from the heat“. This roughly means ‘do have respect for elderly people, keep using their knowledge and experience. It will help you in your further life’.
Maybe that’s the reason why, in everyday life, I do my best to fight for good care and acceptance for people with dementia and people who are different in life than myself. I believe in an inclusive and accessible society for everybody, for older people, for people with disabilities, people who are functionally illiterate and elderly migrants, a society who cares for its inhabitants and in which nobody is excluded.
Juan (Breda, Netherlands)