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Forum held to discuss strategies for enhancing rehabilitation programme effectiveness (with photo)

     The Correctional Services Department (CSD) and the City University of Hong Kong (CityU) held the "NGO Forum cum Outstanding NGO Volunteer Award Presentation Ceremony" today (November 26). The theme of the Forum was "Strategies to Enhance the Effectiveness of the Offender Rehabilitation Programme". Participants at the Forum discussed the effectiveness of the rehabilitation programme by sharing knowledge and exchanging practical experience in order to further develop appropriate strategies to help rehabilitated offenders to rapidly adapt to a changing society and overcome obstacles after release.

     The Chairman of the Board of Directors of Pok Oi Hospital, Dr Ho Wing-tim, said that persons in custody wishing to build a new life after discharge should rely on not only their own determination and the efforts of the CSD, but also the community's support and encouragement. He noted that the Forum could provide a platform to share experiences among non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and further enhance the effectiveness and diversification of rehabilitation work. This would raise the determination of persons in custody in rehabilitation as well as establish more harmony and care for minorities in society.

     The Commissioner of Correctional Services, Mr Sin Yat-kin, said that more than 80 NGOs co-operate with the CSD to provide rehabilitative services. NGOs have also recruited volunteers, including rehabilitated offenders, to assist in the implementation of the rehabilitation programme and help persons in custody to turn over a new leaf by promoting self-reliance and sharing their own experiences. Mr Sin thanked all NGO workers and volunteers for spending time to provide services for persons in custody. The CSD and the CityU have worked closely as partners to promote rehabilitation work, and have organised the NGO Forum for the eighth consecutive year, providing a good academic and informative platform for rehabilitation work.

     The Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences of CityU, Professor Zang Xiaowei, said his university is committed to working with social organisations to contribute to the community. He pointed out that the Forum has become an important event in Hong Kong and that, over the years, the CityU and the CSD have established a successful partnership to jointly promote the rehabilitation programme. The partnership would continue to strengthen and develop, he said. Apart from serving as a co-organiser for the Forum, the university will co-operate with the CSD for other projects, such as research into promoting rehabilitative services and providing voluntary services inside correctional institutions.

     The Forum today brought together professionals from various sectors, representatives of NGOs and volunteers to formulate strategies to improve rehabilitation services and contribute to society's advancement.

     More than 250 representatives of NGOs, academics, volunteers and CSD staff attended the Forum. The event included talks and a discussion session among NGO representatives. In addition, 65 NGO volunteers were awarded commendations in recognition of their contributions in helping to promote rehabilitation services.

Ends/Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Issued at HKT 20:55


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