Government encourages young persons to join social welfare care services in building a caring and inclusive society (with photos)

     The Director of Social Welfare, Ms Carol Yip, showed her support to about 200 young persons who have joined the social welfare care services at the Award Presentation Ceremony for Young Persons Joining the Social Welfare Care Services held by the Social Welfare Department (SWD) today (February 8). She expressed her gratitude to the young persons for their willingness to stand in the frontline of the social welfare to provide quality services and help revitalise the social welfare care sector, bringing vitality and joy to the lives of elderly persons and rehabilitees. She also encouraged more young persons to join the service to help build a caring and inclusive society.

     Addressing the ceremony, Ms Yip said that in light of the manpower shortage and ageing workforce faced by the elderly service sector, as well as the rising demand for long-term care services, the SWD launched the "First-hire-then-train" Pilot Project and the Navigation Scheme for Young Persons in Care Services in 2013 and 2015 respectively to encourage young persons to join elderly and rehabilitation care services. Apart from offering on-the-job training opportunities, the Pilot Project and the Navigation Scheme also provide them with Government subsidies to pursue a two-year part-time course to progressively qualify as health workers and achieve multi-skill qualifications, with a view to improving the social welfare sector's professional competency and image by better equipping the trainees and helping the sector attract new blood and retain talent.

     Ms Yip thanked the social welfare agencies implementing the Pilot Project and the Navigation Scheme for providing full-time employment and professional training for the trainees. She also thanked the employers offering on-the-job training opportunities for their support and encouragement given to the trainees, as well as paying tribute to the parents of trainees for their tolerance and understanding and offering great support and encouragement to the trainees.

     Ms Yip added that as announced in the Chief Executive's 2017 Policy Address, the Government would earmark $1 billion for setting up a fund to subsidise elderly and rehabilitation service units for trial use and procuration of technology products, in order to improve the quality of life of elderly and persons with disabilities and relieve the burden and pressure of care staff and carers. Noting that the initiative would generate more development and employment opportunities for the social welfare care sector, she expressed the hope that more young persons with knowledge of nursing and technology applications would join the sector.

     Today's ceremony aimed to recognise young persons contributing to the social welfare care sector and outstanding participants of the Navigation Scheme, with a view to encouraging them to pass on their love and care. It also aimed to encourage more young persons to join the social welfare care services. More than 190 young persons were commended at the ceremony.

     Also officiating at the ceremony were representatives from the six non-governmental organisation operators of the Pilot Project and the Navigation Scheme, namely the Chief Executive Officer of Haven of Hope Christian Service, Dr Lam Ching-choi; the Vice-Chairman of the Yuen Yuen Institute, Mr Henry Tong; the Community Services Secretary of Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, Dr Ivan Yiu; the Director of Social Work Services of Caritas Hong Kong, Ms Maggie Chan; the Assistant Chief Executive (Elderly Service) of Evangelical Lutheran Church Social Service - Hong Kong, Mr Ho Hin-ming; the Assistant Director (Elderly and Youth) of Yang Memorial Methodist Social Service, Ms Joyce Lee; and member of the Project Steering Committee of the Navigation Scheme, Miss Grace Chan.

Ends/Thursday, February 8, 2018
Issued at HKT 15:11