DSW joins Tang Shiu Kin and Ho Tim Charitable Fund to celebrate Lunar New Year with elderly (with photos)

     The Director of Social Welfare (DSW), Ms Carol Yip, and members of the Management Committee of the Tang Shiu Kin and Ho Tim Charitable Fund, including advisors Mr Richard Tang and Mr Hamilton Ho, today (January 12) hosted an annual reception for the elderly and distributed lai see packets to them in celebration of the coming Lunar New Year.

     Speaking at the reception, Ms Yip said the Fund has been providing financial assistance to needy families and individuals to help them cope with their difficulties since its inception in 1977. Assistance from the Fund helps the poor facing adversity in life and relieves their distress by providing timely and substantial support.

     She said that the Fund granted $2.7 million to 775 approved cases in 2014-15, and the Fund had also approved another 425 applications totalling $1.64 million from April to November 2015. A total sum of $3.1 million was earmarked for the Social Welfare Department (SWD) as social relief grants for the coming fiscal year.

     Ms Yip took the opportunity to extend her sincere thanks to all members of the Management Committee for their long-term support and care for those in need.

     Ms Yip noted that the Government has devoted extensive resources to various services for the elderly, including increasing day care places and providing extended service hours in new day care centres and units for the elderly. With effect from March last year, the Government has provided an additional 1 666 places for the Enhanced Home and Community Care Services and has enhanced the service content, including elderly minding and on-site carer training, to further enhance the support for frail elderly persons living at home. Starting from 2014-15, the Government has allocated $160 million for 210 subvented elderly centres for the enhancement of community support services for elderly persons and their carers.

     On the other hand, approximately $900 million was allocated in 2012-13 under the Lotteries Fund to modernise the facilities of 237 elderly centres across the territory over six years in phases. Furthermore, the two-year Pilot Scheme on Living Allowance for Carers of the Elderly Persons from Low Income Families under the Community Care Fund was rolled out in mid-2014 with an aim of providing 2 000 carers from low-income families with a living allowance to help supplement their living expenses so that elderly persons in need of long-term care services may, with their carers' help, receive proper care to enable them to remain in the community.

     In 2016, the Opportunities for the Elderly Project implemented by the SWD has been merged with the Neighbourhood Active Ageing Project launched by the Labour and Welfare Bureau with a view to encouraging elderly people to actively take part in community affairs and lead a fruitful elderly life by joining volunteer service as well as participate in the development of a neighbourhood support network and an age-friendly community.

     Attending the reception today were some 40 elderly persons aged 60 to 99. The Fund treated them to a wonderful show and a lavish and healthy lunch, in addition to offering them best wishes for a happy Lunar New Year.

     The Fund was founded by the late Sir Tang Shiu-kin and the late Dr Ho Tim, with the DSW Incorporated acting as the trustee of the Fund under Chapter 1096 of the Laws of Hong Kong. Members of the Management Committee include descendants of the founders (advisors), prominent members of the community and representatives from relevant government departments, the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals and the Po Leung Kuk.

     The objective of the Fund is to provide timely financial assistance to needy individuals and families in emergency situations for which other sources may not be applicable or readily available. Recipients of the Fund include the unemployed, disaster victims, the chronically ill, the disabled, single parent families and the elderly.

Ends/Tuesday, January 12, 2016
Issued at HKT 14:45