Thursday, June 07, 2012

Aging Communities, The Yishuvim Aren't All Young Families

The media (and official YESHA spokespeople) like to show all those gorgeous young families living in hilltops and more established towns and communities in Judea and Samaria.  Adorable children are more photogenic than my peers and the even more elderly.

One thing most don't realize is that senior citizen ותיקים vatikkim activities are being established all over.  More and more of us have reached retirement age, and also not all of us are as fit and able as we once were.  As you can see in the picture on the right, small vehicles like the one behind the bicycle are becoming more and more common.

I took pictures of these in Ofra, parked near the bus stop.  Quite a few of those pioneers who established Ofra now need these carts for local transportation.  You can also see them by the stores, library and clinic.

Some people even have medical reasons to the extent that they can use special Shabbat carts which have "engines" specially suited to comply with rabbinic rulings.  They can be used on Shabbat but only by people who fit special criteria.  On Shabbat you'll see them lined up, parked orderly by the synagogue.  This is a wonderful innovation, because those with physical limitations can continue living at home much longer and stay social.  That way they enjoy life and that is very good medicine.


mother in israel said...

This is the flipside of encouraging homogeneous neighborhoods with young couples.

Batya said...

Maybe it's just in Shiloh, but we're developing mixed-age neighborhoods, because that's the market. And veteran couples in Ofra are gradually selling or renting which integrages the older neighborhoods.

Miriam said...

Batya, when we made aliyah instead of going to a merkas klita we settled on our daughter's kibbutz. Rosh Tzurim in Gush Etzion had decided to open a section of house for parents of chaverim. The chaverim treated us like royalty...they made our introduction to Israel and Israeli way of life very easy. Today many of those young chaverim are grandparents themselves.
In Ma'agalim where we live, we have a versified age group from young marries to great-grandparents...and B"H many,many children.....

Hadassa said...

It would be a shame if people left communities upon reaching grandparent age, especially when their grandchildren live nearby. Our most veteran great-grandparents recently had to leave in order to be closer to medical care and it was very sad for everybody. We're living in a mixed-age neighborhood, the oldest neighborhood in Elon Moreh. Over the years some of the old-timers moved away and young families moved in. I think it gradually happens in all neighborhoods, except for the ones comprised only of small units that growing families are anxious to leave after the fourth child is born.

Batya said...

Miriam, that's the way it should be. thanks
Hadassa, I think it's happening in many yishuvim now, since most yishuvim are well over a generation old.