Durant to Brooks: Let daddy stay with you

Take in your father!

That was the advice from Chairman of the National Assistance Board (NAB) Senator David Durant to Lenora Brooks, the daughter of centenarian Clement Whitstanley Holdipp, who lives next door in a termite-infested, wobbly shack that threatens to collapse at any moment.

Chairman of the National Assistance Board Senator David Durant (left) chatting with Lenora Brooks, who is standing at the door of her father Clement Holdipp’s home.
Chairman of the National Assistance Board Senator David Durant (left) chatting with Lenora Brooks, who is standing at the door of her father Clement Holdipp’s home.

Holdipp’s plight was highlighted in the September 9 edition of Barbados TODAY, the same day he celebrated his 100th birthday.

So bad were the condition of the wooden structure where the blind man has lived for many years, that his centenary celebration with Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave had to be held at his daughter’s residence.

At that time, his relatives had pleaded with the authorities to help the elderly man repair the house since, according to Brooks, he had refused to move in with her and she had spent what little she had to do some improvements to the property.   

When Durant visited the centenarian yesterday he was at Brooks’ residence. The daughter said she had taken her father in because the rotting house could fall apart at any time.

Centenarian Clement Holdipp being greeted Senator David Durant.
Centenarian Clement Holdipp being greeted Senator David Durant.

But after touring the decrepit structure, Durant declared that Holdipp simply could not be moved back there, and told Brooks he hoped her father would spend his last days at her home.

“I came here to recommend, ‘let daddy stay with you because your home is there’. When I saw that he came there to have his birthday celebrations I thought, why doesn’t he stay there instead of being removed and carried back into that house which is in need of so much repairs?

“It is leaking, it is leaning, it’s dilapidated, it is eaten by termites. So I am glad that he is with his daughter now and that he can spend the rest of his life there,” the NAB chairman told Barbados TODAY.

Durant said he had visited the family with the intention of finding out more about their situation “because I believe in situations like these that families should be the first responders”.

He said every Barbadian should set out to assist their vulnerable loved ones instead of first calling on Government for help; and he stressed that the state could not do it all.

“He is an old man, he has children and I think that they should be the first responders. And even people in the community would be encouraged to help in such a situation and then the Constituency Council would come in and help as well. Failing all of those, then Government would come on board to give assistance where necessary. I think there should be stages of intervention,” he said.

6 Responses to Durant to Brooks: Let daddy stay with you

  1. Hal Austin September 22, 2016 at 6:11 am

    Perfect advice. Relatives in general, and children in particular, must take responsibility for their ageing and infirmed relatives. No excuses, no depending on the state.
    There is a social compact between children and their parents: when babies, toddlers and teenagers, up to the end of their university education, parents are obligate to look after their children. When the parents reach a stage that they cannot look after themselves, then that is the children’s responsibility. No ifs, or buts.

  2. Dan Vaughn
    Dan Vaughn September 22, 2016 at 7:54 am

    It is ok to keep the elderly and honourable, but sone of these fathers (especially) didn’t do squat for their kids when they were vulnerable also

  3. Amelia Gittens
    Amelia Gittens September 22, 2016 at 10:26 am

    I agree family should help in the best way they can, but mind you some familes dont live good either, some parents and kids might have had a fall out years and some just dont look back

  4. Loretta Griffith September 22, 2016 at 3:33 pm

    This is one time I wholeheartedly agree with Hal Austin. It pains me to see how some children treat their parents.
    For the records, I don’t mean Mrs Brooks since as she said some old people prefer to remain in their home;and you should not get vex with them for wanting their independence but not in delapidated conditions.
    I find there are too many parasites around who would milk what little the parents have and then pretend to the world they are ever so good to their parents.
    In most cases these people play to the gallery and couldn’t care less about the relatives welfare. Real pretenders and fakers.

  5. viterose Van Huis September 22, 2016 at 4:45 pm

    That is what Barbadians use to do. We must remember we too will get old and need assistants and what you give you get.

  6. Sophia Forde September 22, 2016 at 9:02 pm

    Some of the agencies are not helpful when dealing with elder abuse. I have been calling the police, the NAB about an elderly gentleman in my area but to no avail the daughter and granddaughter keep sponging off his pension and treating him ridiculously.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *