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This page is updated on 2006-07-27 12:04
Christian Service News

Issue 51 (April 2006)

Survey Report
Survey on “Community Knowledge of South Asians in Hong Kong”

South Asians who have long resided in Hong Kong are also members of the Hong Kong family. However, their needs have always been neglected owing to the language barrier. Hong Kong Christian Service has conducted a survey on 'Community Knowledge of South Asians in Hong Kong' to find out the extent of their community knowledge and the difficulties they encounter while living in Hong Kong. 133 South Asians were interviewed.

According to the findings, 70.54% of the respondents agreed or strongly agreed that services provided by government departments can be trusted. 80.31% agreed or strongly agreed that the Police can be trusted. 79.93% agreed or strongly agreed that social service organizations can be trusted. These responses indicate a high level of trust.

10.99% would seek employment through the Labour Department, while 5.5% would resort to NGOs. 60.16% would approach social service organizations for help when they felt unhappy. When facing financial difficulty, slightly more than half of them would seek help from the Social Welfare Department (SWD) whereas 45.08% of them would definitely not.

In spite of the positive impression on the government, the findings revealed that South Asians did not have sufficient knowledge on community resources.

Concerning government departments, 59.02% of the South Asians interviewed reported that they did not know or were unsure as to who could help them find a school place for their children. 58.37% had no idea or were unsure about whom they should approach when finding a job. Their knowledge on government resources in financial assistance was also limited. More than six-tenth (63.28%) reported that they had no knowledge or were not sure where to go for help.

Among the respondents, 32.06% said that they knew nothing about community resources, while 22.09% knew only a little. The language barrier had hindered their use of community services and brought adverse effects on their community lives.

In view of this, Hong Kong Christian Service urged the government to increase resources to enhance South Asians in Hong Kong to use community resources so as to improve their quality of life. We initiated the launching of an Interpretation Service for South Asians to assist them to seek for suitable services. This Interpretation Service, with languages including Urdu, Nepali and Hindi, was also made available to government departments, schools or NGOs in order to facilitate effective communication with the South Asians.

In fact, it is not only the South Asians who need interpretation support but also those who work with them, such as social workers and teachers. Previous experience showed that interpretation support has served as an effective connection between school personnel and the parents for the students' welfare. It has also facilitated social services personnel to offer suitable assistance to their clients.

Copyright Hong Kong Christian Service