Kai Fong follows up on over 10,000 support cases last year, up 27 pct

2023-03-22 03:03     BY Yuki Lei    Comment:4

Macau General Union of Neighbourhood Associations (commonly known as Kai Fong in Cantonese) President Chan Ka Leong said yesterday that the number of cases providing livelihood support, emotional support and counselling services last year increased significantly compared with previous years, with more than 10,000 cases in total, an increase of more than 27 percent year on year, showing the “severe impact” of the three-year COVID-19 pandemic on Macau’s economy, society, and people’s livelihoods, as well as residents’ lives, and physical and mental health.

According to Chan, the total number of services provided by the association has recovered to the pre-pandemic level, with more than 3.11 million people-times engaged in its activities and services last year.

Meanwhile, Chan said that this year his association will set up more “service points” in both Macau and mainland cities in the Greater Bay Area (GBA) in line with the government’s policy, aiming “to do well in community services”, with two to three additional service points to be set up in the northern district and in Taipa and Coloane, covering support services for people with disabilities.

The GBA comprises the special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau and nine cities in Guangdong – Dongguan, Foshan, Guangzhou, Huizhou, Jiangmen, Shenzhen, Zhaoqing, Zhongshan, and Zhuhai.

According to Chan, so far the association has opened six service points in Hengqin and Gongbei in Zhuhai city and Sanxiang town in Zhongshan city.

Chan added that in order to support Macau residents’ integration into the GBA regions, one additional service point will also be set up, depending on conditions, in any area where more Macau people choose to live.

Chan pointed out that his association will continue to provide more information and support to young local people, such as on how to start their businesses in the Guangdong-Macau In-depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin or elsewhere in the GBA, enabling more local residents to learn more about the cooperation zone.

Aiming to support the government’s “1+4” development strategy, Chan said that more in-depth research will be carried out by his association in the future, covering different aspects such as people’s livelihood issues and the business recovery of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

According to the local government’s 2023 Policy Address concerning its “1+4” development strategy, “1” refers to promoting diversified development of tourism and leisure in accordance with the goal of transforming Macau into a World Tourism and Leisure Centre, and making the comprehensive tourism industry stronger and better, while “4” aims to continuously promote the development of Macau’s four key industries, i.e., big health, modern finance, high-tech, MICE, and culture and sport; to gradually increase the proportion of the four industries; to constantly enhance Macau’s economic development momentum and comprehensive competitiveness; and to strive setting up a sustainable industrial structure in line with the reality of Macau.

Chan made the remarks when addressing an annual Spring Festival media gathering hosted by his association at The Plaza Restaurant in Zape.  

Macau General Union of Neighbourhood (Kai Fong) President Chan Ka Leong delivers a speech during yesterday’s Spring Festival media gathering at The Plaza Restaurant in Zape. – Photo: Yuki Lei

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