Diwali Celebration Helps

Skokie, IL: on November 6, 2011 The Hindu /Jain/Sikh Seniors residents, of the Grove North nursing home of Skokie (GNH), along with their friends and family celebrated Diwali , a festival of lights with great enthusiasm and traditional zeal . For Indians, Diwali is a festival filled with spiritualism and religious activities, such as worship of Goddess Lakshmi, worship of Lord Ganesha, worship of Ma Kali, worship of Lord Chitragupta and worship of Govardhan. Parvat.

More than 72 participated in song, dance, and joined together for a special meal. The celebration was organized in the main Dining hallway converted in to the gathering place and dance floor for this special occasion. The premise was decorated with diwas, electric bulbs and other decorative electric lighting fixtures, around the portraits of Laxmi, Ganesh, Sarswati and Shrinathji to make their surroundings filled with colorful light and to make it bright and beautiful. Administrative staff and the employees of GNH did everything to keep every person entertained, happy and make life enjoyable. GNH gave them a platform so that they can stay full of life and as energetic as possible.

Explaining principal reason behind the ‘in home’ celebration, Minaben Kansara explained that “almost all our South Asian GNH residents has different identity, lifestyle, attitude, but one thing in common – a sort of loneliness. Thousands mile away from home, Indian senior citizens here in USA find the life much different after their retirement. As parents, they have given their children their life, educated them and enabled them to earn a decent living. In return, few fortunate parents get their dues. But one thing they neither expect nor get from their busy children is “enough time to spend with.” And this depression really goes on a higher scale especially during festivals as they terribly miss ‘home’ and their extended family in India, especially during the holiday seasons”. How much do you miss India while celebrating Diwali in Chicago? The question to Mrs. Manjula Modi, mother of Asian Media USA senior editor Dr. Chandrakant Modi brought a strange smile to her face. Mrs. Dipti Patel, daughter-in-law of the resident Indiraben Patel came to celebrate with her mother in law. She took her day off and decided to accompany her mother-in-law instead of staying with her husband and kids. Dipti stated that “You can see it in their eyes that they have boarded the time machine and gone back to the “many wonderful nostalgic moments” they had. Indiraben added “Yes we miss those days of celebration, greatest being the firework!! But we enjoy the celebration here too.

“It’s different but we all feel like a bigger family.” And to make it merrier, GNH members leave no stone unturned. We all miss our extended families. You will find many elderly residents whose kids don’t look after them. All our senior people have strong urge to visit temples especially on this type of particular day. But who is here to fulfil our wishes? So we come here to make a bigger family. They find friends among one another, and celebrate these times together and bring back those golden nostalgic memory of joyful days back home” explained seniors’ Program Coordinator Minaben Kansara. Administrator Ambreen Qureshi added that “In essence this type of in house celebration in our facility is analogous to ‘Mountain comes to Mohamed rather than Mohamed going to Mountain”. As you can see in arranging to celebrate such cultural event, we have decorated the hall colourfully and traditionally, and prepare sumptuous dishes. “My sole objective is to make every senior dance,” said DJ Arunkumar Modi who did incredible job keeping everyone entertained with in recital of prayers, garba/ raas and Bhajans during the entire event. The event was concluded with traditional Arati and dinner by authentic Gujarati dishes prepared by friends and relatives of the residents and GNH kitchen staff.

About The Grove North
The Grove North offers short and long term rehabilitation, IV therapy, wound care, hospice and respite care. Private pay, Medicare and Medicaid residents are welcome. This unique senior living community staff is committed healthcare professionals who speak Hindi, Guajarati, Urdu and Malayalam, offering special brand of personalized attention. The facility has Indian and Pakistani physician on staff. Elegant Indian and Pakistani meals are prepared fresh daily by Indian Chef. There is a special Indian-Pakistani Unit featuring newly designed rooms with comfortable furniture and flat screen TVs with choice of south Asian channel. There is landscaped courtyard, comfortable lounges and elegant reception area. For additional information or to schedule visit, please contact Ambreen Quereshi or Patty Davis at 847 679-2322

Photographs and Press release by: Asian Media USA(Chandrakant Modi, MD)

Suresh Bodiwala
Asian Media USA
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