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Friends of elderly in institutes

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Bringing friendship in the old people’s homes


In order to combat isolation and abandonment that often accompanies the hospitalisation in a geriatric ward, the Community members provide entertainment, companionship and pastoral care in over 100 institutions throughout Italy, in Europe, and in other continents.

The friendly and constant companionship helps the elderly to maintain constant relations with people outside the institution, and to assure that their physical-psychological integrity is maintained. As a result this presence provides a concrete form of protection of the right of the weaker in society and of social control over the quality of life inside these institutions. In many structures in fact the presence of the Community is the only way they have contact with the outside world. In this sense we exercise continuous monitoring against every form of abuse and maltreatment. The elderly people, and especially the elderly who are not self-sufficient, are victims of discrimination in regards to care and assistance, use of their economic resources and exercise of their fundamental human rights. There are many cases of abuse, omission, violence, maltreatment. Friendship with the elderly becomes also a form of protection and defence of the fundamental rights of the human person. Such protection is also a form of social control that one can exercise in the nursing homes and institutions both public and private who accept the elderly. Such program not only helps assuring the physical-psychological integrity of the residents, but also to give the institutions stimuli so that they may carry out their institutional tasks easier.


Living Together

 Sharing a flat among the elderly is an answer to the housing problem which was set up with the encouragement and support of the Community in many countries of the world. The elderly join their resources, sometimes even modest ones; they are therefore able to avoid hospitalisation or institutionalisation, to guarantee for themselves the necessary assistance and to continue to live as they desire.

Shared housing is an innovative alternative to institutionalisation that also enhances the use of local informal resources such as neighbours, family, etc.


Family Homes

Casa alloggio di Largo Magna Grecia - Roma 


 In recent years, the Community has established family homes for the elderly in the urban centres of Rome, Genoa and Naplesin normal apartment houses that can house up to 30 elderly persons. Even in the city centre of Naples a family homes of this type was established.

These family homes represent a response for those elderly that cannot live in their own homes anymore. They represent an alternative to large institutions and they are planned in order to provide a closely-knit community, a family and comfortable environment. The elderly welcomed in these houses are often very poor and/or partially or totally dependent.

Doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, diet specialists, members of the Community offer their professional skills and free help and many other people offer their time, in order to meet all the needs involved in the management of these family homes.

The Aged

February 3 2017

Letter from Goma, Congo: We are the spokesperson of poor and neglected elderly of the outskirts

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December 7 2016

In London there is a table ready for the poor: it's called ''Our Cup of Tea''. The video by BBC

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July 5 2016

The 'thrown away' elders of Mozambique on a pilgrimage, from loneliness to the mercy of the Jubilee

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June 27 2016

In Pemba, a people of the poor and sick goes through the Holy Door with the Community of Sant'Egidio

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June 20 2016

Prague: Elderly people finally out of nursing homes for the Jubilee of Mercy with Sant'Egidio

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May 18 2016

Africa: Jubilee of Mercy with the elderly in Ivory Coast

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