Adaptation to life after retirement can be a challenge. In spite of being psychologically prepared, retirees often experience the feelings of idleness and restlessness. In order to be able to adapt, retirees must learn how to make their life more enjoyable and meaningful. Based on my experience, I suggest volunteering which is meaningful to the individual, family and the community at large. Volunteering can also result in personal growth as it is not only a process of giving but also learning as well. In this paper, I would like to share five of the most essential “ingredients” that would make volunteering a success. These pointers will also help Elderly Centres to recruit volunteers.
In performing our duties as volunteers, we also need to be aware of our environment. We have to understand our current situation and to deal with the reality. The prevailing problems in Hong Kong are first, the ageing of population. The number of elderly has been increasing sharply. This is reflected in the number of elderly homes that has outnumbered kindergartens and nurseries. Statistics show that (Census and Statistics Department 2004) indicated the proportion of elderly population will be 1/4 by 2030. Secondly, there has been a reduction in the funding for the elderly. As the government is allocating less to the elderly, we are constrained by 2 the availability of funds and hence we need to focus on giving aids to the very deserving elderly only. I therefore wish to appeal to those elders who are capable of self-care to come forward to help those who need help.
Leung, K. F. T. (2009). Elderly participation: My experience as a retiree (APIAS Monograph Paper Series No.15). Retrieved from Lingnan University website: http://commons.ln.edu.hk/apiasmp/15