South China Morning Post
20th April 2023
Hong Kong parents caring for children with disabilities need more than just money, leading NGO says
Authorities urged to establish more subsidised centres to support carers looking after children with disabilities
Centres could act as a safety net to help parents and therefore lessen risk of child abuse, NGO’s regional manager says
A leading NGO serving Hong Kong’ needy youth has urged authorities to establish more subsidised centres for parents caring for children with disabilities rather than simply providing monetary support to the families, saying services have been overloaded.
The Heep Hong Society, which runs four out of 19 subsidised resource centres for families of children with disabilities, said each of their branches was now serving 582 families on average in 2022-23, about 80 per cent more than the 330-household minimum threshold set by the government.
“The demand for service is huge. We hope that the government can increase the number of these parent resource centres,” the society’s regional manager Carmen Chan Lai-fong said. “There is only one centre in each district.”
There is a centre serving the entire city and one in each of its 18 districts for families of children with disabilities, providing support for carers. Parents are taught skills to care for their youngsters and cope with difficulties.