District Highlights 2021-22
CARING FOR THE COMMUNITY
- The Sha Tin District Social Welfare Office (District Social Welfare Office) continued to organise the Green Ribbon Campaign jointly with welfare service units and local community groups through cross-service and cross-sector collaboration for the promotion of a caring community. Building on last year’s theme of “We Together, Shore Up Sha Tin”, the District Social Welfare Office launched a variety of programmes in 2021-22 to promote positive messages such as mutual aid in the neighborhood and self-reliance. To address mental health issues associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the District Social Welfare Office, together with welfare service units in the district, organised mental health promotion activities for residents of several small localities including Sha Kok Estate, Sun Tin Wai Estate, Heng On Estate and Kam Tai Court.
- In the light of the challenges brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the District Social Welfare Office coordinated with different welfare service organisations in the distribution of foodstuff items and festive gifts, including rice, cooking oil, noodles, soup and mooncakes, donated by public-spirited organisations to grassroot families and underprivileged groups.
- To help residents of new public housing estates integrate into the community, the District Social Welfare Office worked together with the social welfare service units serving Chun Yeung Estate to draw up action plans to familiarise these residents with community resources and facilitate their early adjustment to the new environment. Components of these action plans included introducing new residents to social welfare services and community resources available in the district, organising orientation tours and carnivals, etc. The District Social Welfare Office also fully supported concerned welfare organisations in their efforts to implement Community Investment and Inclusion Fund projects that render support to residents and strengthen the neighbourhood mutual support network at Chun Yeung Estate.
ENHANCING FAMILY FUNCTIONS AND CHILD PROTECTION
- To enhance family functions and parenting capacity, the District Social Welfare Office organised a series of groups and programmes, including developmental groups on the restructuring of marital relationship, educational activities on positive parent-child interactions and the Caring Family Ambassador Scheme, in close coordination with welfare service units in the district. It also collaborated with a new child care centre to hold activities that taught child carers about the developmental needs of pre-school children and stress management skills for carers. Besides, a short promotional video headlined by a cast of energetic youths was also produced to promote positive life values and a healthy lifestyle among children and youths.
- The District Social Welfare Office coordinated with welfare service units in the district to recruit volunteers to provide tutorial services for children in need, thus relieving parents from the stress of supervising their children’s studies. It also worked with schools to distribute a parent-child card game, with a view to promoting positivity and love in the family, as well as interactive family games.
- To strengthen support for separated/divorced families, the District Social Welfare Office set up mobile information booths to promote co-parenting, and held therapeutic groups to enhance communication and collaboration between separated/divorced parents. It also organised talks, workshops and sharing sessions to enhance the collaboration between social workers and school personnel in the district, while enabling frontline workers to acquire a better understanding of children’s emotional and psychological responses to their parents’ separation/divorce, actively promote co-parenting, and handle conflicts between children and their separated/divorced parents more effectively.
- To step up the work on child protection, the District Social Welfare Office organised sharing sessions for district collaborators of the Comprehensive Child Development Service, a workshop on SIGNS OF SAFETY® and a workshop on handling suspected child maltreatment cases, with a view to heightening the sensitivity of social workers and professionals in the relevant sectors (including teachers and medical staff) towards child protection, while facilitating cross-sector collaboration and exchanges on child protection.
PROMOTING CARE AND SUPPORT FOR THE ELDERLY, THE DISABLED AND THEIR CARERS
- The District Social Welfare Office formed the “Walk with Dementia Alliance” with over 40 organisations/social services units in Sha Tin district in late 2020 to promote dementia-related cross-sector and multi-disciplinary collaboration, professional training and public education programmes. Apart from holding a seminar to enhance frontline social workers’ professional knowledge of how to prevent and handle wandering behaviour in elders with dementia, the Alliance also created a set of toys to facilitate social and cognitive training for elders with dementia to train with their carers at home during the pandemic. Furthermore, the District Social Welfare Office produced two short videos based on true stories of elders with dementia and their carers. The videos were uploaded to the SWD website to enhance the public’s understanding and awareness of dementia.
- To recognise the efforts of elderly carers and call on the community to care for their needs, the District Social Welfare Office launched the “Sha Tin District Commendation Scheme for Carers of the Elderly”, and commended elderly carers in Sha Tin on an event entitled “Prosperous Golden Years in Sha Tin”. Moreover, the District Social Welfare Office held the “Sha Tin Active Seniors Ambassadors” election and continued to encourage elders to join the “Opportunities for the Elderly Project”, with a view to promoting a positive image of elders and sharing their joy and positive energy with the community.
- During the pandemic, the District Social Welfare Office collaborated with rehabilitation service units in the district to plan and implement social inclusion activities and the “Online Games Day”, which was organised to energise persons with disabilities (PWDs) and create an opportunity for them to showcase their talents. To strengthen the support for carers of PWDs, the District Social Welfare Office launched the “Angels for Families with PWDs in Sha Tin Scheme”, through which rehabilitation service units in the district recruited, trained and matched volunteers with families with PWDs to provide support to these families. A variety of activities was also organised to help these families establish a sustainable social support network.
NURTURING YOUNG PEOPLE AND SPREADING POSITIVITY
- The Local Committee on Services for Young People, together with the HKU School of Professional and Continuing Education and several NGOs working with the youth, launched a job shadowing programme called “Weaving Dreams in the Care Career” to broaden young people’s career options. Young people studying Form 3 or above in the district were recruited to join employment orientation activities, during which they gained knowledge of the work environment and prospects in the elderly and rehabilitation care service industry.
- Through subsidising and collaborating with youth service units in the district, the District Social Welfare Office implemented the “Sha Tin Youth Ambassador Scheme”, which encouraged young people to develop positive thinking, build resilience, and unleash their potential and dynamism through training programmes and activities of different themes. Through volunteer work, the youth could help those in need as well as the residents of new public housing estates in the district, thus bringing joy and positivity to the community.
- To address the problem of youth suicide and the mental health problems of young people, the District Social Welfare Office co-organised a training workshop with District School Development Section of the Education Bureau for youth workers, teachers and school personnels to enhance their awareness and understanding of youth’s mental wellbeing and suicidal risks. The workshop also aimed at increasing the participants’ sensitivity and skills for early identification and intervention of at-risk cases, as well as their knowledge about on-site support services for schools.