BELIZE CITY, Wed. Sept. 23, 2020– Good news is that, following a series of treatments from veteran footballer himself, Sebastian “Sabe” Nunez, who has developed some skills in massage therapy, ailing past footballer Peru Olivera has been able to stand up now and take a few measured steps, after being bedridden for almost two weeks. So said his brother, Wayne “Hogman” Olivera yesterday; he also expressed their appreciation for some assistance received from a few individuals.
More good news is that a small group of football veterans and fans of Peru have joined together to form what is dubbed, the Peru Olivera Support Team – P.O.S.T. The idea behind the initiative is to secure a consistent source of financial assistance for a once great baller who has become physically disabled and unable to work.
There have been a number of cases over the years, where one of our veteran stars becomes somehow disabled and unable to continue earning his/her keep. (Recently, the late Wayne “Bom” Jones and Eian “Coco” Henry come to mind.) Good hearted individuals often come to their assistance, but the help comes in spurts, sometimes a sizable cash donation; but life goes on, eating is a daily affair, and there are other daily expenses, and soon the individual is again destitute and desperate for assistance. It is a burden that becomes hard for one friend to bear; and it can also lead to depression, as the afflicted individual struggles with having to repeatedly beg for help.
The Social Security net only catches so many, and so there is a need across our communities, especially in these unprecedented hard times, for individuals who can afford it, to seek ways and means to help others survive the economic trauma brought on by this pandemic.
These are tough financial times for many Belizeans, and while some of us can still enjoy two or three meals a day, the reality is that many others are living “from hand to mouth.” It is in times like these that a people’s mettle is tested; and perhaps a good strategy going forward is for all of us to think in terms of the biblical adage – be our brother’s/sister’s keeper. None of us can do it alone, so why not join a “support team;” or if one doesn’t already exist, then help to form one for your fallen brethren/sistren.
Word coming out of the current football community, especially among semipro players, those who were otherwise unemployed, is that they are all feeling the pinch from this long delay in football competitions due to Covid-19. The sentiment is probably shared in basketball.
In general, today’s youth have their own set of problems, and few are receptive to suggestions of assisting old timers who they hardly know, not having seen them perform. And we older folks are dying out quickly too; or battling our own set of health issues. So, it’s a relatively small pool of potential donors to draw from; but it doesn’t take a whole lot if a team of ten or twenty share a weekly stipend towards helping a brother/sister in dire need.
Even among the able bodied folks, unemployment is high, and many are desperate for any kind of work to earn their keep. Ideas and initiatives that can generate some form of employment are at a premium right now, and many are listening to what the aspiring politicians have to offer in this regard. But when competition for jobs is tough in the streets, the situation is tougher still for those who cannot move about.
Feel free to share your thoughts or ideas on this issue. Belize, we’re in this together. My email: [email protected]; and phone: 607-8616.