Older People's Reference Group

Harbhajan Singh

What were your involvements before NDA?

Harbhajan Singh

Before retirement in August 2002 I worked in secondary school education, ending as Deputy Head. I was a local councillor in Bexley from 1978-94, chair of the Sikh temple in Belvedere, Bexley, and chair of Bexley Council for Racial Equality. In 1977 I was co-founder of the Anglo-Asian African-Caribbean Friendship & Cultural Association, and am still secretary. Since 2002 I have been the chair of Bexley Multi-Faith Forum, and in 2010 became Chair of Greenwich Multi-Faith Forum. From 2006-2009 I was secretary of the Greenwich Pensioners Forum and Trustee of the Greenwich Older People’s Advocacy Project. Since 2009 I have been the co-chair of the Greenwich Older People’s Olympiad &Voice, and assistant secretary of London Older People’s Strategy Group.

Why did you join the OPRG?

I saw the advert for the OPRG in the Help The Aged Bulletin and thought it was a dream come true to be involved. I had heard of Prof Walker before but never had the luck to work with him. I felt that if I joined the group I would feel more focused and involved in future developments to improve the lives of older people.

What has been the most rewarding part of being a member of the OPRG?

I feel privileged to have the opportunity to get advice and guidance from Alan Walker and all the heads of programmes.

What would you like to see the NDA achieve?

I would like the NDA to have influence on politicians, to draw to their attention the needs of elderly people, especially Asian elderly. There is the perception that all elderly Asians are looked after by their families but this increasingly isn’t the case nowadays, as younger families are more occupied with their work, and this needs to be addressed.

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