Mr Gorg Agius, known as Gorg tal-Muzew or “God’s poet”, was awarded for his contribution towards making the lives of elderly and other patients in hospitals a little bit more cheerful, at a ceremony held under the patronage of the President of Malta, Marie Louise Coleiro Preca at Verdala Palace. He was awarded the Nazzareno Vassallo Award organized by Malta’s leading care provider, Caremalta.

92 year old Gorg, a member of the Maltese Society for Christian Doctrine (M.U.E.U.M), has been visiting patients for more than 65 years many times riding the 5.30am bus from Birgu to make the best of the day. In a most simple manner, he manages to bring some joy to people passing through hard times many times using poetry to convey a positive message. For this award Mr Agius was nominated by the Birgu Local Council as well as by other individuals

During the same activity, Professor John Rizzo Naudi, today aged 90, was given a lifetime achievement award by Caremalta. Prof Rizzo Naudi is considered as the brains behind the setting up of the department for the elderly and the introduction of a number of community services for the elderly such as Telecare and home help care.

In a short speech, Caremalta CEO Natalie Briffa Farrugia described this award as due recognition of an invaluable contribution that so many persons, most of them elderly themselves, are giving to society.

Nazzareno Vassallo, Chairman of Vassallo Group, which this year is celebrating its 70th anniversary, announced that the Group will now expand its services to persons with disability through a new company HILA. HILA will be opening its first community home for persons with disability, Casa Apap Bologna, later on this year.

Mr Agius and Prof Rizzo Naudi received the awards from President Coleiro Preca who described this event as “a feast” and “a celebration” of active ageing showing that older persons have so much to offer to society.