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Launching a new initiative that aims to combat ageism and advocate for the rights of older persons

Tafta elder, Penny Naidoo presents the Sawubona Campaign poster

In a world where ageism remains a pervasive issue hindering the enjoyment of human rights for many, The Association for the Aged (Tafta) will be using their new Sawubona Campaign to address age discrimination and promote the rights, protection, and dignity of older persons.


At the launch event, Femada Shamam (Tafta CEO) shared the following, “Age discrimination often leads to elder abuse, as older individuals are sometimes denied their fundamental rights to protection and a life lived with dignity. The Sawubona Campaign seeks to challenge this deeply rooted problem by encouraging society to truly ‘see’ and appreciate the value and contributions of older people.”


‘Sawubona’ – a Zulu greeting that translates to ‘I see you’ – encapsulates the essence of Tafta’s initiative to recognise and acknowledge the presence, wisdom, and experiences of the older generation. The campaign will unfold throughout the year via the organisation’s digital platforms, introducing various resources and opportunities aimed at fostering intergenerational connections and creating spaces that honour elders.


Shamam encouraged supporters of the organisation to join in the crucial movement by engaging on social media and to participate in the campaign’s calls to action. “Your first opportunity to support the initiative is by signing the petition issued by GAROP (Global Alliance for the Rights of Older People) advocating for a UN Convention on the Rights of Older Persons. This global effort aims to address ageism at an international level through a binding legal instrument and foster a world that values and protects the rights of older individuals. It is time to lift the veil of ageism and truly ‘see our elders’. By actively participating in the Sawubona Campaign, individuals can contribute to a more inclusive and respectful society for people of all ages,” said Shamam.


To sign the petition, visit the Sawubona Campaign tab on Tafta’s website ( You can also stay updated and engage with calls to action by following, liking and sharing Tafta’s social media pages. Use the hashtag #Sawubona2024 to share your personal Sawubona initiative – whether it’s a story, a commitment, or an action that promotes inclusivity and appreciation for older individuals.


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