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Covering our parents

John (not his real name) has been my friend for many years and he shares with me about his investment plans. The other day he told me something that left me thinking about the future.

John and his brother Peter are the only children of their single mother (call her Mary). Their mother has worked tirelessly to pay for their school fees through to University where they now have at least one degree each. They are growing well in their professions. Mary, their mother, has been left with hefty school fees loans to pay to her SACCO and bank, but she’s doing so gladly. She’s very proud of her sons and their achievements.

John and Peter are now married and with children. The natural inclination is to “leave and cleave” as they were told on their respective wedding days. However, Mary is about to retire from her secretarial position in the civil service. She will get her retirement package but it’s not good enough to sustain her in her rented apartment – she hasn’t managed to build a retirement home.

Despite John and Peter’s blooming careers, they are not able to build their mother a house either since the demands of their young families are weighing heavily on them. John told me that he has found the solution to his mother’s sustenance issue. He told me that he will get an insurance saving policy that will mature the same time with his mother’s retirement. He will then combine the money from the insurance cover with his mother’s retirement package and build her a house in their rural home or buy her an apartment.

How many years till your parents retire? Do you feel a need to take care of them? What is your plan?

Kariùki Wawerù

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