SLW visits Islands District (with photos)

     The Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Dr Law Chi-kwong, today (April 24) visited Islands District, where he took a closer look at welfare services in Tung Chung and met with District Council members. The Under Secretary for Labour and Welfare (USLW), Mr Caspar Tsui, also joined the visit.

     Dr Law first went to the Islands District Council to exchange views with the Chairman, Mr Chow Yuk-tong, and members on labour and welfare issues as well as matters of local concern.

     Accompanied by the District Officer (Islands), Mr Anthony Li, and the District Social Welfare Officer (Central Western, Southern and Islands), Ms Ip Siu-ming, he proceeded to the Neighbourhood Advice-Action Council Tung Chung Integrated Services Centre (ISC). Since its establishment in 2001, the ISC has been providing integrated "through-train" services for residents of all ages in Tung Chung and remote areas on Lantau Island. These services include the provision of after-school care for seven days a week; family counselling; support for ageing in place; visits to elderly singletons and doubletons in remote places; school social work service for teenagers; overnight outreaching teams; and services for ethnic minorities. In recent years, the ISC has also proactively provided necessary services for residents who moved into new public rental housing estates (PRHs) in the district.

     Dr Law said that the Government has been concerned about the needs of new PRH residents and has therefore funded a number of community support network projects for new PRHs through the Community Investment and Inclusion Fund (CIIF). As of March 2019, the CIIF had funded a total of 47 projects which established community support and mutual help networks covering 32 new PRHs across the territory. Given the high effectiveness of the projects, the Government put forward in the 2018 Policy Address the regularisation of community support network projects for new PRHs to facilitate residents and families newly moved into PRHs in different districts to integrate into the community as soon as possible. Ten PRHs are expected to be completed in 2019-20.

     Dr Law noted that, in the Islands District, the CIIF is now funding seven projects operated by non-governmental organisations. Apart from three of them supporting students, youths and the elderly by cross-sectoral collaboration, the remaining four (including Tung Chung ISC) are assisting residents of new PRHs in Tung Chung to adapt to the new community, including Ying Tung Estate and Mun Tung Estate which started tenant intake last year.

     Also joining the district visit were two secondary school students enrolled in the "Be a Government Official for a Day" Programme 2019 - Heads of Departments Edition, who were shadowing USLW for one day. Not only did they gain direct experience of an official's work, but also a better understanding of social welfare services for different target groups.

Ends/Wednesday, April 24, 2019
Issued at HKT 19:18