Speaker :

A Qualitative Investigation of Community Engagement Efforts with the 'Hidden' Elderly - Towards a Social Capacity Building Service-Learning Model for the Elderly

Activity: Talk/lecture or presentationPresentation

View graph of relations



With an ageing population in Hong Kong projected to increase to its peak in 2029, where 1 in every 4 persons would be a member of the elderly community, the challenges of the ageing population become increasingly pronounced and of dire concern. This is of particular concern to the ‘hidden’ elderly; that is, elderlies who stay at home all day without, or with limited, contact to the social world outside their doors. This qualitative study aims to highlight how, through a social-work grounded service-learning activity, which is geared towards building social capital for the community, the hidden elderly, NGOs, and the young adults can constructively interact together for mutual benefit and social change.

16 Volunteers from City-Youth Empowerment Project (CYEP), 10 hidden elderly, and 2 outreach social workers in a NGO, Neighborhood Advise Action Council (NAAC), were involved in the study (N = 28). Using in-depth interviews, responses were solicited from the three parties to elucidate their experiences and perceived interpersonal and intrapersonal changes. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the responses upon transcription of the audio-taped interviews. The findings indicate that all respondents greatly benefitted from the service-learning activity in terms of increased social participation, perceived social support for endeavors, e.g. in new activities like art workshops and community visits, and extended social networks, and heightened senses of social awareness and social responsibility.

Research Unit / Event Journal/Book Series


TitleThe 6th Asia-Pacific Regional Conference on Service-Learning
LocationPetra Christian University
Degree of recognitionInternational event