Age-friendly community and productive ageing in Hong Kong
Contextualizing Productive Aging in Asia
National University of Singapore
World Health Organization (2007) promotes the idea of age-friendly cities in order to enable people to age actively and productively. In Hong Kong, the population aged 65 years and above is projected to rise from 13% in 2011 to 30% in 2041 (Census and Statistics Department of the Government of HKSAR, 2012). With this rapid growth of the elderly population, greater efforts are urgently needed to prepare for the shift in demographics and the challenges it brings to the Hong Kong society. The survey results reveal, productive ageing in term of volunteering and employment is modest at the community, though good community infrastructure and community service are in place. Qualitative date suggests, while opportunities of volunteering and employment are available, productive engagement is constrained by senior citizens’ poor health and physical fitness, illiteracy, no labour insurance for older employees and ageism. Moreover, Chinese culture under local community circumstance may act as pull and push factors of productive engagement. According to the ethical principles of filial piety and caring engagement, older people should enjoy their retirement years at home with their family members, and shoulder part of the caring role of their adult children, such as taking care of the grandchildren, providing instrumental support, and so on. Thus, careful program designs for senior citizens in different health conditions, community education to reduce ageism, and policy advocacy are needed to underpin a more age-friendly community and productive ageing in Hong Kong.
Wen, Z. (2017, March). Age-friendly community and productive ageing in Hong Kong. Paper presented at Contextualizing Productive Aging in Asia, Singapore.