In 2015, responding to the challenges and opportunities arising from the city’s ageing population trend, The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust launched the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project in eight pilot districts of Hong Kong with funding of over HK$190 million. With the first phase of this 5½-year project having produced positive results, the Club has announced that it will be expanded into a citywide campaign with the support of the 18 District Councils.
Attending the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project Phase II launch ceremony today (28 November) were the Club’s Executive Director, Charities and Community, Leong Cheung; Under Secretary for Labour and Welfare Caspar Tsui and 200 representatives from the District Councils, Elderly Commission, District Offices, Social Welfare Department, NGOs and community organisations.
Mr Cheung said the elderly was one of four strategic focus areas of the Club's Charities Trust. “The Club puts emphasis on the quality of life of the elderly and hopes to promote positive ageing through a series of preventive support initiatives, thereby transforming the elderly’s role from a passive one to an active one, so that they can continue to interact with the community,” he explained. “We are pleased that the project is now ready to move into Phase II, which will further extend age-friendliness to all 18 districts in the city.”
Phase II of the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project will see its work extended to the remaining ten districts of Hong Kong. The results in Phase I have been encouraging, as out of the eight pilot districts, namely Sha Tin, Tai Po, Central & Western, Wan Chai, Kowloon City, Kwun Tong, Islands and Tsuen Wan, six have already joined the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Network for Age-friendly Cities and Communities, while the other two are at the application stage.
In addition, four local gerontology research institutes, namely the Institute of Ageing at The Chinese University of Hong Kong; the Sau Po Centre on Ageing at The University of Hong Kong; the Institute of Active Ageing at Hong Kong Polytechnic University and the Asia-Pacific Institute of Ageing Studies at Lingnan University, have assessed the age-friendliness of the eight pilot districts in eight domains suggested by WHO.
Based on the results of this research, the project teams have developed three-year action plans in collaboration with the District Councils, so as to enhance the age-friendliness of these districts. Some HK$1.5 million will be provided to each district through the project within the coming three years to support NGOs and community organisations in implementing district-based programmes.
A total of 33 community-level projects have been supported so far, benefiting over 30,000 people. More than 800 "Age-friendly Ambassadors" have also been recruited from all districts of the city and age-friendliness messages delivered to over 2,000 participants through various activities.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club
Founded in 1884, The Hong Kong Jockey Club is a world-class racing club that acts continuously for the betterment of our society. The Club has a unique integrated business model, comprising racing and racecourse entertainment, a membership club, responsible sports wagering and lottery, and charities and community contribution. Through this model, the Club generates economic and social value for the community and supports the Government in combatting illegal gambling. In 2016/17, the Club’s total direct return to the community was HK$30.5 billion. It is Hong Kong's largest single taxpayer, one of the city’s major employers and one of the world's top ten charity donors. The Club is always "riding high together for a better future" with the people of Hong Kong.
The Club’s Executive Director, Charities and Community, Leong Cheung, says the Club is pleased that the project is now ready to move into Phase II, which will further extend age-friendliness to all 18 districts in the city.
The Club’s Executive Director, Charities and Community, Leong Cheung (9th right); Under Secretary for Labour and Welfare Caspar Tsui (9th left) and other guests at the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project Phase II launch ceremony.