LU holds Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project - Ambassador Recognition Ceremony to encourage active participation of elderly to build an age-friendly community
3 Dec 2021
The Asia-Pacific Institute of Ageing Studies (APIAS) of Lingnan University (LU) organised the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project – Ambassador Recognition Ceremony with the theme of “Show Capacity, Build an Age-friendly Community” on 2 December 2021 to recognise the Project Ambassadors’ active participation in promoting an age-friendly culture in all 18 districts over the past six years. About 120 Ambassador representatives from different districts and elderly centres, representatives from NGOs and the four gerontology research institutes of local universities attended the Ceremony, while over 540 elderly people and general public joined online to witness the growth and development of the Project Ambassadors, and learn about the valuable experiences in building an age-friendly city.
The officiating guest, Ms Irene Leung, Head of Charities (Trust-Initiated Projects Management) of The Hong Kong Jockey Club, together with Prof Joshua Mok Ka-ho, Vice President of LU, Prof Terry Lum Yat-sang, Associate Director of the Sau Po Centre on Ageing of The University of Hong Kong, Dr Bai Xue, Director of the Institute of Active Ageing of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and Ms Regina Lo, Project Manager of the CUHK Jockey Club Institute of Ageing, presented certificates to the Project Ambassadors in recognition of their contribution and devotion.
In her welcoming remarks, Ms Irene Leung, Head of Charities (Trust-Initiated Projects Management) of The Hong Kong Jockey Club, said that ‘positive ageing and elderly care’ is a strategic charitable focus area for the Club. Ms Leung added, “Through diverse projects that support the elderly’s physical and mental wellbeing, we hope to encourage the elderly to be participants instead of just recipients, so that they can continue to interact with the community and enjoy active and healthy ageing. The Club also encourages our partners to launch innovative services to meet different societal needs.”
Prof Joshua Mok Ka-ho, Vice President of LU moderated a panel discussion on “How to build an age-friendly community through promoting social participation.” The scholars from the four gerontology research institutes viewed that the unique bottom-up, district-based, and evidence-based approach adopted by the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project has successfully built Hong Kong into an age-friendly city. “The academia, welfare sector, community organisations and business sector have collaborated to improve the age-friendliness of the society, while the Project Ambassadors have been equipped with age-friendly city concepts through trainings, and can apply relevant skills to build an age-friendly community, reflecting the importance of social participation.” said Prof Mok.
In the ceremony, the Project Ambassadors shared their experiences on contributing to their community through different social participation opportunities. Chan Kue-ting, the 68-year-old Ambassador from Yuen Long, shared, “Participating in the Project allows me to accomplish my childhood dream to study in university. I learnt how to speak for myself and the elderly. The Project encouraged me to be more observant on the community needs and communicate the concerns to the relevant stakeholders in a proper manner. I have also motivated my peers to participate in the Project, and I am now more confident to contribute to the betterment of my community.”
Another youth Ambassador, Sally Wong Ka-yee, expressed that, “The society and university have given the young generation a lot of resources to unleash our potential. I like to tell stories through camera lens. During the pandemic, I did a lot of video shooting with my elderly friends to discover new perspectives and new things, hoping to share our vitality and joy to the older generation.’
In response to the challenges and opportunities of the city’s ageing population, The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust has initiated and funded the Jockey Club Age-friendly City Project since 2015, in partnership with the APIAS of LU and three other gerontology research institutes of local universities in Hong Kong. The Project has trained over 2,500 Ambassadors who help disseminate age-friendly messages. Beside, around 140 district-based progammes were organised by more than 70 NGOs and university professional support teams. All of Hong Kong’s 18 districts are now part of the World Health Organization’s Global Network for Age-friendly Cities and Communities.
Learn more about the Project: