Press Release

Ministry of Health & Social Development
Senior Citizens
Release Date:
Thursday, 4 May 2017 - 2:36pm

The BVI community is being asked to recognise, respect and appreciate the contributions of elders, in observance of Senior Citizens’ Month.

The 28th annual celebration, led by the Social Development Department, commenced with a Garden Tea Social on May 1 at the J.R. O’Neal Botanic Gardens.

Senior Government officials and over 50 elders representing various senior programmes and communities attended.

In his official message, which was played during the ceremony, Minister for Health and Social Development, Honourable Ronnie W. Skelton declared May as the ‘Month of Elders,’ and explained that this year’s theme, ‘Age Out Loud’, is meant to acknowledge their voices. Minister Skelton stated that he believes that the connotation of the term ‘senior citizen’ no longer reflects the new reality of a more vibrant and knowledgeable older adult.

He also commended the work of the Government for recognising the voice of elders and the entire Virgin Islands community for committing to healthier lifestyles which has proven to improve longevity.

Minister Skelton was unable to attend the ceremony due to his recent travels at the World Health Congress in Washington D.C.

Premier, Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE said that he appreciates the ‘golden citizens’ for their role in building a better BVI; and also for “acting as excellent knowledge resources with experiences from which all can benefit”.

Remarks were also given by Chief Social Development Officer, Mrs. Annie Malone-Frett. Deputy Secretary within the Ministry of Health and Social Development, Ms. Tasha Bertie chaired the event.  Deputy Governor, Mrs. Rosalie Adams was also in attendance.

Activities planned for the month include a Beach Picnic on May 12, Walk-a-thon on May 19, Bingo Night on May 25, Fish Fry and Market Day on May 26, Fishing Derby on May 31, and Road Town Seniors 20th Anniversary Celebration on June 2.

The Social Development Department is encouraging the Virgin Islands community to support all activities in celebration of elders. For more information on the scheduled activities or ways to show support to the various community senior programmes, contact the Social Development Department via telephone 468-3650.

The Ministry of Health and Social Development aspires to provide a caring and integrated system of health and social services that facilitates human development and improves the quality of life in the Virgin Islands. 

Minister’s Declaration and Senior Citizens’ Month Schedule of Activities are attached.


Adrianna J. Soverall

Ministry of Health and Social Development
Tortola, British Virgin Islands
Telephone: 1(284)468-2272 or 2174