Centenarian Enid Noel tells youths: Obedience, key to a long life

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Social Development and Family Services Minister Donna Cox, left, with Enid Noel who celebrated her 100th birthday on Sunday with a party at the Hyatt Regency in Port of Spain. PHOTO BY ROGER JACOB –

ENID Noel took her time, choosing her words carefully, to share some advice to the nation’s youth. She said young people must understand that obedience to the rules of man and God, are essential to a long and fruitful life.

And as she celebrated her 100th birthday on Mother’s Day, Noel said her advice is solid as she has the experience of a century behind her. She said she believes a close relationship with God is the driving force behind her reaching 100 not out.

Asked what advice she has for young people, Noel said, “Be obedient. As long as they can obey and listen to their parents, they are going to be successful in life.”

Noel told the media during her birthday celebration at the Hyatt Regency in Port of Spain that she is a seamstress who still sews her clothes.

The mother of six, grandmother of 20, great-grandmother of 31 and great-great grandmother of three said she enjoys going to church and is still capable of doing most things on her own.

“Every Sunday, I go to church. When my daughter tells me I’m tired, I say, ‘not to serve the Lord.’ And I would still go. He’s the one who’s keeping us and He’s who we have to live for. We can’t do anything without Him.”

The event was attended by Minister of Social Development and Family Services Donna Cox who welcomed Noel as the latest addition to the ministry’s Centenarian programme.

“We have so many people living to 100. We are happy about that. We can’t take this for granted.”

She said her ministry has now partnered with the Ministry of Health to have a doctor assigned to each centenarian registered with the Division of Ageing.

“We encourage people who know someone is 100 or going to be 100, to reach out to the ministry to get them registered. If they are not on the list, we would miss them.”

Cox said she was amazed by the large number of centenarians in TT and encouraged young people to take advantage of their secret to long life.

“When I asked centenarians what is their secret to success one of the keywords they use is God, they pray to God or have faith in God and that is what keeps them. Another thing is that they worked hard. Those are two areas we need to look at in today’s society. That is the key, a good heart, good mind, and hard work,” Cox said.

She later asked her to weigh in on the current crime situation in the country. Noel said better parenting skills are the way to deal with the crime situation.

“We need better parents. The parents of today need to take a little more time with their children because you have got to love your children and if you do just like Jesus did, your children will be just fine.

“Not every mother will be successful with happiness or marriage but you as a mother is already a success because you gave life,” Noel said.