“Everything is possible even in old age. ‘I cannot’ is only a feeling” – the expert counsel of Dr Shylaja Ramkumar, noted Neuropsychiatrist, was a stroke of inspiration to the senior delegates of ‘Celebrate 55+’- the one day workshop organized by ATMA Foundation on Graceful Ageing at Hotel Vrindavan Inn on 14th January 2017.

The workshop, attended by more than 75 elders, was inaugurated by Dr K S Pillai, prominent Orthopaedic Surgeon & President of NSS, Trichur Taluk and Smt Nalini Chandran, renowned Educationist.

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Dr Pillai gave a presentation on health and exercise, and addressed the concerns of the seniors in this area.

Smt Nalini Chandran’s, in her energy-packed interactive session, focused on asserting one’s needs and taking up responsibility for one’s own happiness.

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ATMA Volunteer Ms Parvathy G gave a presentation on the activities of ATMA Foundation. This was followed by an audience interaction guided by Sri C K Suresh, Chairman, ATMA Foundation, and renowned Counsellor & Relationship Expert.  Many elders shared their thoughts and experiences.  After this, Sri Anilkumar, Yoga Expert and key faculty of ATMA Yoga Peethom, guided the delegates through some simple warming up and breathing exercises.

Post lunch, Sri Jayakumar, Chief Manager of Central Bank of India, Thrissur, gave a short interactive presentation on Digitalisation of Financial Transactions, where many elders could clear their practical doubts in this regard. This was followed by a session on Mental Health by Dr Shylaja Ramkumar. In a very conversational style, Dr Shylaja took the audience on a journey through the different challenges & possibilities and myths & realities of old age.

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Sri C K Suresh, in his concluding session on ‘Living in Harmony’, inspired the seniors to ‘Celebrate Every Moment of Life’, and ‘to make every moment more meaningful by sharing our blessings with the less privileged people around us’.

The Valedictory session was graced by the inspiring presence of Padmasri Dr P R Krishnakumar, MD, Arya Vaidya Pharmacy Coimbatore, and Sri E K Bharat Bhushan, Former Chief Secretary of Kerala. Sri Krishnakumarji imparted fresh energy into the audience, citing his own tryst with various challenges and how a fighting spirit and positive attitude helped him to emerge victorious. Sri Bharat Bhushan appreciated the efforts by ATMA Foundation to address the very relevant concerns of senior citizens, and encouraged the elders to utilize their time and resources for social welfare.

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The positive reviews received from many delegates, and the general energy level throughout the sessions, was a conclusive testimony to the effectiveness of the workshop.