Amazing Seniors co-founders aim to create community that supports and empowers the elderly

“Life Begins at 50”, assures Penny Low and Jasmin Amirul Ghani.

Low (left) and Jasmin think corporates must listen to seniors, a viable consumer segment (Photo: Shahrill Basri/ The Edge Malaysia)

Post-retirement, people who were likely contributors to the economy and community at one point often fade into the background. Amazing Seniors wants to bring them back to the fore, so they become viable consumers again.

Jasmin Amirul Ghani and Penny Low, co-founders-cum-directors of this new platform for seniors, are bubbling with ideas of nurturing a community in which people are happy to grow older and help each other within an ecosystem that benefits everyone.

After 10 months of mostly online and hybrid programmes, the group is hosting its first Seniors Festival at Atria Gallery, Petaling Jaya, from Sept 30. The three-day event is in conjunction with International Day of Older Persons, on Oct 1. The programme will feature performances by seniors, a musical event every evening, a display of things from the past, and talks on topics such as successful ageing, preventing dementia, bone health, legacy planning and working beyond 50.

“Sponsors come in as exhibitors who pay for the space and that helps us to bring more things in,” Jasmin explains. Among them are Sunway Sanctuary, a senior living facility annexed to Sunway Medical Centre; healthcare products provider Pinang Medical Supplies; EcoWorld, which builds retirement villages; and Shariah-compliant Woodrose Senior Residences.


The group is hosting its first Seniors Festival at Atria Gallery (Photo: Amazing Seniors)

The seed for Amazing Seniors germinated when Low, who works in branding and advertising, turned 50 in 2020 and started questioning how she wanted to age. “I was basically looking around at what the community was like and realised it wasn’t a space I wanted to grow older in.”

She signed up for a master’s in design management and spent the next two years researching issues concerning seniors. Degree done, Low then set out to find someone with the same ideals. It was pure serendipity when a mutual school friend introduced her to Jasmin, who was already running Hire.Seniors, which connects retirees to jobs.

Jasmin says: “I realised there was so much more I could do beyond employment, like socialisation, learning and things seniors enjoy. I was planning to start something new when I met Penny.”

“We were 80% similar in what we wanted to nurture. So, jom! Let’s do it together,” adds Low, the creative partner who takes care of communications and partnerships with corporates. Jasmin, the process person, grounds her ideas and brings them to fruition. A third core member, Laura Yap, handles merchant acquisition. Supporters who share their passion of nurturing a senior-friendly community have come forward to help too.

Launched last November, Amazing Seniors is attracting attention. The unexpected attendance at its activities, and participants clamouring for more, floor the duo. Self-funded for now, they keep operations lean by parking at Low’s branding agency and working with corporations to fund whatever they organise.


Amazing Seniors, with the tagline “Life Begins at 50”, aims to connect members with service and product providers through programmes they enjoy (Photo: Amazing Seniors)

All their activities are free. “We don’t want to charge the seniors anything — it goes against our principles. After so many years of contributing to society at large, it’s time for them to be on the receiving end,” says Low, who tells partners what they are doing is not corporate social responsibility.

“It’s about companies reaching out to seniors and looking at them as a viable segment. And a very fast-growing one. Corporates must listen. We have a lot of unique needs as we grow older and producers must come up with things designed for us.” Such “things” can range from buying a cane to care options, check-ups, medication, retirement planning and ways to keep busy and happy.

“Yes, we’re definitely fighting against ageism. We need to say no to it,” Low emphasises. “Don’t hold yourself back by complaining, ‘I’m growing old’. You’re just growing older. ‘Old’ comes with a list of things that happen to you. Then again, at what age do things not happen to you?

“At 10, you’re taught how to cope with being a teenager. At 50, nobody tells you how to deal with menopause — andropause for males — or creaking bones, or what clothes match grey hair. You can look so good with grey hair!”

Loneliness is a big issue as well, they note. Many older folk want to connect but do not know how or hesitate to. There are senior communities online which meet physically. “We want to pull them together so people know where to join what and interact with others.” It’s also about enabling, say, someone who cannot drive, to get acquainted with another who can, meet, go to the same destination and do something together.


The community celebrated their inaugural gathering session with a potluck (Photo: Amazing Seniors)

Amazing Seniors, with the tagline “Life Begins at 50”, aims to connect members with service and product providers through programmes they enjoy. Fun is the key factor. As Low puts it, “If I ever need to use a cane at 70 or 80, I want it to be bright yellow with polka dots. I still want to go on my roller skates, but I need things that ensure that if I were to fall, I won’t break a bone.”

Seniors, many of whom have the money and time to maximise it, limit themselves by saying, “I cannot, lah. I’m scared,” they observe.

“This is about embracing every step of the way as we age. If there is limited time, how can we maximise and make the best of it, whether it’s learning something new or enjoying ourselves, rather than feeling the end is near. Being an amazing senior is something to work towards,” says Jasmin, who is looking forward to celebrating 50 next year.

It’s about the mindset, both concur. Drawing seniors to what they need equips them to decide what they want for themselves. “When they have that ability to make their own choice, it’s empowering,” says Low, who finds herself in the not-unusual situation of those who make suggestions that do not always go down well with an elder.

“When I bring up senior homes to my mum, she asks, ‘You want me to die early, ah?’ But when her friends tell her the same thing, she goes to check it out with them.”


Volunteers at their Amazing Raya Charity Cookout 2022 (Photo: Amazing Seniors)

What fires the pair is showing seniors what they can choose to do with their life, instead of fading into worn furniture clutching the remote control and a cushion, and the enthusiastic response of those who are coming round to this idea.

At least 90% of seniors have a handphone and are using it, Low reasons, and another aim of the platform is to reach them digitally, and be more effective. “How do we help them be comfortable exploring its many uses? The same with e-wallets. Scammers have a field day because you don’t know and are scared. At the end of the day, it’s about educating seniors and letting them have fun.”

There is also substance behind every activity, be it a talk by the Securities Commission Malaysia on protecting yourself against investment scams,  what to include in a will, or vaccinations and booster shots.

People like a combination of learning and social elements, they found, from an online event that ran over three days and attracted more than 1,500 participants.

“Seniors like to learn while having fun — it’s no longer learning for work or money. They want to socialise and keep asking about our next event. There’s so much we can and want to do, in terms of capability and technology. If this works well in the Klang Valley, we want to take it to the rest of the country,” Low says.


For details on the Seniors Festival from Sept 30 to Oct 2, call 017 201 9748 or see here.

This article first appeared on Sept 19, 2022 in The Edge Malaysia.


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