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Jockey Club Carer Space Project launched to provide innovative carer centres and assessment tools
23/05/2024

As Hong Kong’s population ages, ageing in place has become a significant challenge for society. According to the 2021 Population Census, there were more than 240,000 carers in Hong Kong providing long-term care for the elderly in the community.

To address the needs of carers and their elders, The Hong Kong Jockey Club’s Charities Trust has initiated and funded the Jockey Club Carer Space Project with an approved donation of HK$290 million. Nine Carer Spaces will be gradually established in the community to provide innovative carer-centric services.

The project was officially launched today (23 May). Officiating at the launch ceremony were Secretary for Labour and Welfare of the HKSAR Government Chris Sun, Club Steward Lester Huang, Convenor of the Advisory Committee of the Jockey Club Carer Space Project Professor Patrick Nip and representatives of project partners.

Speaking at the ceremony, Club Steward Lester Huang said one of the Club’s strategic charities focus areas is positive ageing and elderly care. “The role of caregivers is crucial for enabling the elderly to age at home. However, caregivers often encounter numerous pressures and challenges along their caregiving journey. We believe the Jockey Club Carer Space Project will raise public awareness about caregivers and become a reference for similar services in the long term, fostering a caregiver-friendly community, reflecting the Club’s commitment to the betterment of our society.”

The project is partnering with Sau Po Centre on Ageing at The University of Hong Kong to conduct a survey on carers’ needs. A self-assessment tool will also be developed to help carers gain a deeper understanding of their own needs, encourage them to seek timely assistance. It will facilitate the social welfare sector to identify high-risk families early on to provide timely intervention. Preliminary research through interviews with close to 1,500 carers revealed that 7.3% of respondents identified as having a high level of carer needs – reporting potential risks of family conflicts, anxiety, self-harm or harming others.

Partnering with five non-governmental organisations, the Jockey Club Carer Space Project will establish Carer Spaces to provide holistic support to carers. This includes assisting them in planning their caregiving journey and offering counselling services. Carers can also share their experiences and provide mutual support to fellow carers. The Carer Spaces will also provide flexible daytime respite services for the elderly, offering carers leisure space and relevant activities. The five-year project is anticipated to benefit more than 27,000 carers and 15,000 care recipients. It operates on a membership basis and carers are welcome to register free of charge. Further details can be found on the Jockey Club Carer Space Project website: jccarerspace.hk.

The Club’s support for Jockey Club Carer Space Project, like all of its charity donations, is made possible by its unique integrated business model through which racing and wagering generate tax contributions, charity support and employment opportunities for the community.