The Social Welfare Department (SWD) has announced that the Navigation Scheme for Young Persons in Care Services is in full swing with five non-governmental organisation (NGO) operators providing about 500 training places in 2016-17 for young people to join the social welfare care services.
A spokesman for the SWD said today (July 12) that the Government launched the Navigation Scheme in July 2015, providing a total of 1 000 training places in the coming years to encourage young persons, aged 18 to 25 and who have completed Form 5 or possess an equivalent qualification, to join elderly or rehabilitation care services.
The spokesman said that three of the NGO operators, namely Evangelical Lutheran Church Social Service - Hong Kong, Haven of Hope Christian Service and Yang Memorial Methodist Social Service, had recruited a total of 180 trainees in 2015-16. The other two operators, namely Caritas-Hong Kong and the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, have also been conducting their recruitment exercise since April this year.
Through the Navigation Scheme, opportunities of employment and training, including a two-year part-time course under government subsidy, will be offered to young persons who are interested to work in care services of the welfare sector, so that they may develop their profession along an established career path through on-the-job training, he said.
"Under the Navigation Scheme, arrangements will be made for young persons to take up care work in elderly or rehabilitation service units. Before that, the operating agencies shall arrange for young persons to attend an orientation programme, including personal care worker training and a first aid certificate course, with a view to equipping them for entering the care sector.
"Young persons will be required to work 44 hours per week (including meal break) in the service units where they are employed with a starting monthly salary of $10,360 for those who join the Scheme and work as Care Worker in 2016-17. Upon their registration as Health Worker, the monthly salary will be raised to $12,450. In addition, the elderly and rehabilitation service units offering job placement shall provide mentorship as well as employment guidance and support for young persons to facilitate their adaptation to the working environment," the spokesman said.
After taking up employment, young persons will be invited to attend a two-year part-time course at a qualified training institute. The course fee will be processed on a reimbursement basis. Fees will be reimbursed to the trainees annually upon their successful completion of the course each year with a certificate issued by the training institute.
"Upon successful completion of the two-year part-time study, young recruits will be recognised for having a qualification at Qualifications Framework Levels 3 or 4. For those interested in developing their career in the care service and meeting relevant eligibility criteria, they may, on the basis of their multi-skill qualification, pursue other training, such as nursing, social work or management courses, on their own initiative and move further up their career ladder in the social welfare sector," the spokesman added. Information about the training institutes in partnership with the service operators and relevant details about their part-time training courses are available in the Annex.
All service operators have been actively preparing a variety of publicity activities, including organising Briefing cum Recruitment Days to introduce relevant details about their respective implementation plans. They will also set up information booths in various secondary schools tomorrow (July 13), the day when the results of the 2016 Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education Examination are released, with a view to recruiting secondary school graduates to join the Navigation Scheme, the spokesman said.
Those who are interested to join the Navigation Scheme may contact the operating agencies through the following means:
Evangelical Lutheran Church Social Service - Hong Kong
Tel: 9538 8213
Fax: 3460 5241
Haven of Hope Christian Service
Tel: 2643 3365
Fax: 2706 0463
Yang Memorial Methodist Social Service
Tel: 2609 1855
Fax: 2602 7115
Tel: 3589 2268
Fax: 2537 9287
Tung Wah Group of Hospitals
Tel: 3525 1218
Fax: 3525 1212
For further information and enquiries about the Scheme, people may browse the SWD website (www.swd.gov.hk) or contact the Elderly Branch of the SWD at 2892 5560.
Issued at HKT 10:30