The first Association of Retired Persons (AARP) was started in the U.S.A. in 1958 by Dr. Ethel Percy Adrus, a retired high school principal. It evolved out of the National Retired Teachers Association (NRTA) which she had established in 1947 and new programmes and services were subsequently added and proved popular and highly effective. Upshot-Membership has grown from 50,000 in 1958, to over 33 million in 1991.
The idea has since spread to many other countries and today there are millions of members of Retired Persons Association in the UK, Europe, Australia, etc.
Locally, M & M Insurance Broking Services Limited asked a number of prominent senior citizens headed by Ken Gittens, Vernon Glean and J. Maurice Quesnel all of whom are deceased, to look into a version of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) and evaluate the advantages of implementation.
When all the data were assembled, the possibilities looked attractive and workable and so with M & M’s assistance, TTARP was started. Subsequent announcements and advertisements gained National attention and resulted in many members being enrolled. Indeed the benefits of membership, including attractive discounts on a wide range of goods and services, would serve senior citizens well.
Actually, the list is a very long one, but a brief summary would show M & M Insurance Broking Services Limited with Premium Savings and other tangible benefits, with discounts in more than sixty-two categories throughout Trinidad and Tobago. A few examples would be Tru Valu, Hi Lo, Ferreira Optical, Standard Distributors, Kappa Drugs, Movie Towne, Securicor etc.
Indeed there are. TTARP objectives are:
- To enhance the quality of Life of Mature Citizens.
- To promote their independence, dignity and purpose.
- To lead in determining their role in society.
- To improve the image of the Golden Years.
To achieve these objectives, four distinct streams of activity are engaged in:
- Tangible Benefits – i.e. Discounts etc. as stated above; and
- Medical Assistance Plan
- Death Benefit\Term Insurance Plan
With regard to (2) a Development Plan will include:
- Consumer Affairs
- Crime Prevention
- Retirement Planning
- Volunteer Expertise
- Social Action – Financial Planning/Ongoing Education etc.
- Cultural Programmes
- Representation to Government on Retirees etc.
With regard to (3) this Hospitalization Assistance Plan started with effect from 1st September, 1996 and (4) Mega Insurance Co. Ltd. Offers a Death Benefit/Term Insurance catered for Senior Citizens.
Well, an Organisation is as good as the integrity of its leaders. In this respect, the TTARP’s Executive Committee has been carefully selected to reflect a cross section of Trinidad and Tobago society with particular emphasis on integrity. Members are Peter Pea/David Cameron/Geoffrey Lewis/Mayling Younglao.