Our lolos and lolas have a special place in our hearts. Family gatherings and weekend activities whether in malls, restaurants or in our ancestral homes almost always involve them. Unfortunately, the pandemic has been particularly challenging for the elderly, many of whom are not allowed to leave their homes under current restrictions. Many cannot go out to see their family and friends until the quarantine restrictions are lifted.
To ensure that the elderly do not feel left out in these difficult times, Ortigas Malls in partnership with ARTISTSHOPcares has launched a heartwarming initiative called ‘APO that cares’ in time for Grandparent’s Day on September 13. The ArtistShop is the same organization behind the famous S.I.L.Y.A. chairs made especially for the elderly that are found around Ortigas Malls as well as airports, commercial centers, and other public places around the country.
“Apo that cares” aims to bring the mall experience to lolos and lolas through their grandchildren. “Apo” comes from the word apothecary, which traditionally is a person who prepares and sells medicine. For this campaign, apothecary doubles as apo – the Filipino word for grandchild – and how they deliver care and love to their grandparents. Through the initiative, gift bags containing liquid hand soap and soothing balm may be purchased by grandchildren at Ortigas Malls and delivered to their elders – a gesture to remind them that although they may not be around to join the rest of the family in mall visits, they are still remembered.
Ortigas Malls values the elderly. “We recognize that the elderly should continue to live full lives and enjoy the best that life has to offer, despite the constraints posed by the quarantine,” says Architect Renee Bacani, Vice President of Ortigas Malls. “While it may take time before our lolos and lolas can go back and once again rejoin their families and loved ones in visiting malls, Ortigas Malls wants to assure them that they are cherished,” Bacani adds.
Through “APO that cares”, Ortigas Malls and ARTISTSHOPcares aim for this year’s Grandparents Day to remain memorable and joyful.