"Experience renewed my soul"
Mr. Mahmoud Abu Daoudous, 70 years old, from Jordan
My life has always been full of work since I was 12 years old. I started working and never stopped. I worked as a bus driver for 23 years until I had a stroke in 2015, and having a stroke is no easy thing! I was paralyzed, unable to walk for a year and a half, and I was the one who never stopped looking for working. However, this life sentence led the 70-year-old Mr. Mahmoud Abu Daamous to finally begin his story.
It is difficult for a person who is used to working more than 10 hours a day to find himself permanently in bed all day long, sitting full of sadness and unable to do anything, but with great determination and challenge I began to recover in 2017.With the completion of the treatment I was able to walk and move my hands again. This was such a joy that I am unable to express the feelings I experienced.
I used to go to the NAYA Centre for more than three years even before my condition because I enjoyed volunteering to take care of olive trees and picking during the right seasons. However, this year I decided to firstly look after myself before looking after the olives. But I did decide to join The project of appreciation that targets those of my age started and carried out by the Arab Youth Activities Network (NAYA) and funded by HelpAge International in Jordan.
I was very pleased to be one of the participants in the activities of the projects which were so interesting and diverse. I began with the training of accessories making, during the training I was able to make two pieces of accessories that I gave to my daughters. What gift is greatest gift than the one you make yourself? Then, I participated in the training of detergent making of natural raw materials available in the house; which was very valuable. This helped us create household cleaning products with less chemicals and money.
Now, I do not wake up every day to think about my illness and treatment, the project of appreciation took away my thoughts, and helped me psychologically as I made new friendships, new friends, becomes busy again. And this, renewed my soul entirely.
I believe in the importance of these activities for older people. They have positive effects on the soul, spirit and body. It gives us the opportunity to make new friends, help us to occupy our free time, and turn lost hours into valuable time. Lastly, I am trying to expand on what I have been taught through the project and sell them. Overall, these trainings are not just a great livelihood opportunity, how nice to feel the taste of giving again.