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Do you have a good retirement plan?

Published:Wednesday | April 25, 2012 | 12:00 AM

According to the experts, a good pension plan is evident where a retiree is receiving 70 per cent of what he or she earned while working. To maintain a reasonable standard of living in retirement, it is recommended that everyone saves towards this.

Despite this recommendation, however, saving for retirement is not a financial priority for many, especially the young. Travelling the world, driving the latest model motor vehicle, or living in the most fabulous house in the future, are given greater thought than a pension plan. But as the Good Book says: "Consider your ways and be wise" - have a pension plan!

With or without a retirement plan, age renders us unemployable. With no savings, children, relatives or friends by our side, there could be untold suffering. With the physical challenges of maturation, money is never enough to help the elderly live a relatively comfortable life. It's the kindness of relatives and neighbours that will help to make living worthwhile.

Seeds of kindness

And here is wisdom: there can be no better pension plan than sowing seeds of kindness that will bear fruits in your later years. The poor girl or boy who you helped through school could be the one to prop you up in bed or wheel you across the streets when you become immobile. Reality? The wild fathers who behave like wild fires - burning their bridges behind them - must be careful. The children that they drop here and there, then walk away, may be the only ones to pick them up when they fall. And what if they did not support these children?

Children can be a very important part of the pension package. Take care of them. Heard recently of an elderly neighbour who in her younger days took more pleasure in childbearing than child-rearing. As soon as a child was delivered, it was dumped on some relative as she went her merry way enjoying the pleasures of the world. Fortunately, the children were cared for by the relatives. Now in her senior years, the distance, which she created between the children and herself still exists. That chapter may not end on a happy note, but we do hope for the best.

Then there is the story of brother who worked hard, saved well and had a good pension plan, however, such great preparation was no match for the kind of love and care meted out to him by his children in his final days. Why? He cared for them in his heyday.

Make a good financial retirement plan, but along with that there must be a good social plan - enabled only by loving your neighbour as yourself and sowing seeds of kindness.

How about starting a safe pension plan by sowing in the lives of those listed in this column today?

To help us, please call 334-8165, 884-3866, 299-3412 or deposit to acct # 351 044 276 NCB. (Bank routing #: JNCBJMKX) or send donations to Hello Neighbour C/o 53 Half Way Tree Road, Kingston 10; email:

Thanks for helping:

1. Pat, St Andrew, for offering a bed and a table with chairs to a needy neighbour.

2. Mr Simpson, for offering a sewing machine to a neighbour.

3. Bobbett, St Catherine, for giving a refrigerator and a bed to a neighbour.

4. Sophia, St Andrew for donating clothing and bed linen to Esther, St Thomas

5. Neighbour for giving a sewing machine to a needy neighbour to help generate income.

Opportunities to help

Ann, Manchester, difficulty lifting child to clinic - needs stroller.

Neighbour, St Catherine, unemployed. Asking for loaf tins to do a little baking as income generator.

Neighbour, asking neighbours for a television to assist with recreational needs of females in a penal institution.

Perleta, St Andrew, unemployed mother of three, got burnt out - in need of a refrigerator.

Neighbour, St Mary, husband died. Needs clothing for boys 18, 17, 11.

Nickiesha, St Mary, husband had an accident and unable to work. Asking for help with food, clothing and lunch money for children.

Brother Roger, St Catherine, needs a second-hand tent to help with the spiritual development of several persons in his community.