We provide collective and immediate relief to small to medium-sized elderly care homes, supporting the elderly care industry with professional, empathetic and pragmatic solutions.
As the fifth COVID-19 wave persists, the elderly care industry in Hong Kong is on the brink of collapse. The industry continues to struggle with ongoing uneven resource issues as well as shortages in medical supplies and healthcare manpower. As a non-profit organisation, Golden Age Foundation actively promotes the development of smart ageing initiatives as collaborative platforms among all sectors. Within days of the fifth wave, the Golden Age Care Anti-pandemic Support Programme was launched to support the elderly care industry.
The programme is specially curated to offer immediate relief for declining small to medium-sized elderly care homes throughout the pandemic. Combining resources from various industries, including smart ageing technology, the programme has assembled a professional volunteer team to offer effective solutions for care homes to sustain and thrive throughout the pandemic and provide safe and comfortable homes for elderly residents.
Since its launch, the programme has received generous donations from various empathetic organisations and individual benefactors. Thus far, we have expanded our scope and supported 34 elderly care homes in Hong Kong.
On 28 March, an online launch ceremony was held to celebrate the official commencement of the second stage of the programme. The event was attended by Dr The Honourable LAM Ching-choi, Member of the Executive Council and Chairman of the Elderly Commission, Mr LEUNG Chung-tai, Director of Social Welfare, Mr CHU Min-kin, Chairman of the Equal Opportunities Commission and over 100 volunteers, individual benefactors and guests from various partnering organisations. (About the ceremony) The second stage of the programme is currently in progress to provide support for more elderly care homes.
As the pandemic continues, private residential care homes for the elderly face major challenges.
- Under the fifth wave of the pandemic, the number of confirmed cases has bit a new high, and outbreaks have occurred in residential care homes one after another.
- According to the license statistics of the Social Welfare Department, there are 602 licensed private RCHEs in Hong Kong, providing a total of 65,354 places, of which 188 private RCHEs have purchased places, involving 30,522 places.
- These residential care homes for the elderly vary in size, lack experience in dealing with highly contagious diseases, and have no concept of infection prevention and control in their environmental arrangements. Therefore, this pandemic is an unprecedented crisis for them, and they are at a loss to respond.
- There may be some misunderstandings about the response of RCHEs to the pandemic. For example, some believe that RCHEs should not refuse to accept residents who return to RCHEs from hospitals, but we must also consider the difficulties and challenges faced by these RCHEs. This is the crux of the problem.
Connecting cross-sectioral force, Meeting needs with E&E
Helping solve the urgent problems facing elderly homes; Turning crisis into opportunity and innovation
Elderly care services in Hong Kong have always been faced with uneven resources. Non-government-funded RCHEs have been facing problems such as insufficient manpower and insufficient resources for many years. However, during this period of the pandemic, the helplessness and difficulties of private residential care homes for the elderly have been highlighted.
As a collaboration platform for government, business, private education and research, the Golden Age Foundation hopes to lend a helping hand to such institutions during this critical period. It will use a huge network of people, including professional social workers and medical volunteers, to provide full support to gather forces from all walks of life to drive the Caring people from all walks of life. This plan is based on proactive care for the needy residential homes, in-depth understanding of the root cause of the problem, providing targeted support and crisis management plans.
The purpose of this project is to help the RCHEs tide over the difficult times through support, to build a network of mutual trust and communication, and to re-pair useful resources in the community to the RCHEs in need. In the long run, this project will help "disadvantaged" residential homes continue to improve, provide appropriate services for the elderly.
Our volunteer team comprises a group of smart robots as well as professionals and specialists from various industries.
"Well experienced Social Workers + Nurses + Healthcare professionals + Counsellors + Researchers + Nursing students + College students + IT experts"
On 27 February and 16 March, we held two press conferences to present our programme mission, details and development progress in stages to the public. The events also helped raise public awareness about the severity of the challenges faced by elderly care homes. Additionally, the significance and impact of our programme also generated various media interviews and coverage.
The road to anti-pandemic support is long, and we need support from all walks of life to make the journey faster and more comprehensive.
Please consider making a donation today to support the Golden Age Care Anti-pandemic Support Program and help us provide ongoing support for those in need.