Traditional Chinese Simplified Chinese Email this article
LWB to launch pilot projects to foster care for elders

    The Labour and Welfare Bureau and the Elderly Commission will jointly launch a new district-based scheme to combat elder abuse.  The "Pilot Neighbourhood Active Ageing Project - Caring for Elders" will support activities to promote care for elders and abuse prevention through neighbourhood support networks.

    The Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, said, "Many studies have indicated that the most effective way to prevent elder abuse is to make use of the comprehensive and diversified support networks built within the community.

    "Under the scheme, 18 pilot projects will be implemented through cross-sectoral collaboration throughout the territory. Based on the need and characteristics of each district, District Social Welfare Officers will co-ordinate the participation of suitable organisations in the scheme in the current and coming financial years."

    With a total budget of some $2 million, each project will receive a maximum of $100,000 to carry out programmes to tackle elder abuse through a three-pronged approach, namely education, prevention and support.

    On community education, activities would be jointly organised by project operators and community organisations to promote inter-generational integration and harmonious families. The Elder Academies will also encourage their students and families to care for each other.

    To prevent elder abuse, elderly caring groups would be set up with trained elder volunteers or recovered abuse victims.  Accompanied by social workers, elderly caring group members would visit the elders and provide support, including counselling services, to those whose relationships with their families are tense.

    "We believe the elder volunteers can do better in reaching out to their peers who are unsociable and do not know where to seek help. The recovered victims can also tell from their experience how violence or ill-treatment cannot solve problems, and thus help those in need to rebuild relationships with their families," said Mr Cheung.

    On provision of support, the operators should work closely with the District Elderly Community Centres, Neighbourhood Elderly Centres and Social Centres for the Elderly to follow up on abuse cases identified by the elderly caring group.  If need be, they would notify the Social Welfare Department and the Police for follow-up.

    The Chairman of the Elderly Commission, Dr Leong Che-hung, said, "It is of utmost importance that we involve elders themselves in the prevention of elder abuses. We must get the message across to people of different ages and from different walks of life in order for the caring culture to take root in the community. This is in line with the commission's directive to encourage cross-sectoral collaboration and inter-generational integration as well as our vision in promoting active ageing and care for the elders.

    "We welcome project operators to make use of the community networks of the Elder Academies and the neighbourhood support network of the Pilot Neighbourhood Active Ageing Project to further promote care for the elders."

    As a collaborating partner, Radio Television Hong Kong will produce radio drama series to drive home the messages and to attract more organisations to participate.

Ends/Sunday, June 15, 2008
Issued at HKT 11:00


Print this page