SHKP continues to work with social welfare and voluntary organizations on different initiatives this year to show warmth and care to the less fortunate.
Cleaning house, fixing the family reunion meal and making festive snacks…households are busy preparing for a happy Chinese New Year. But seniors with infirmities or limited mobility living alone find basic chores like sweeping the floor or cleaning windows insurmountable. The Census and Statistics Department's 2011 Population Census Thematic Report: Older Persons says there are about 120,000 older people living alone in Hong Kong. SHKP recently started a programme with the Employees Retraining Board to show care and concern for the elderly. For every ten employers who contract for the Board's Smart Living Scheme Chinese New Year services, SHKP will pay for three hours of house cleaning for a senior living alone, so their home can be spic and span to welcome the Year of the Goat. 388 elderly people are expected to benefit from the SHKP programme, which additionally encourages people and organizations to employ Retraining Board graduates and opens up entry-level job opportunities.
The cold weather prevailing before winter turns to spring puts a strain on some older people. The SHKP Volunteer Team recently joined The Neighbourhood Advice-Action Council to visit senior couples and singles living in Sham Shui Po, taking hot soup and spending time to chat and show their care. The visits cheered up the seniors and offered a respite from the cold, dreary winter days.