Sze Lai-Shan

Cost of extracurricular activities puts poor pupils at disadvantage: NGO

Sze Lai-shan. Photo: May Tse

The chance of children from poor families winning admission to a school of their choosing is becoming slimmer, an NGO says. Nearly 90 per cent of secondary schools list extracurricular activities or "other learning activities" as part of their admissions criteria.

Saturday, 16 February, 2013, 3:46am

Devoting her life to helping the poor

Sze Lai-shan moved to Hong Kong from the mainland at the age of 11. Not knowing a word of Cantonese, or even being able to list the 26 letters of the English alphabet, she found living here a struggle. However, thanks to her exceptional effort, she won a university place to study social work, and on graduation joined the Society For Community Organisation (SOCO).

18 May 2012 - 12:00am

Cage dwellers ask Legco for housing

More public housing should be built for people in cage homes, who must pay soaring rents to live in intolerable conditions, social activists told legislators yesterday.

The Society for Community Organisation (SOCO), which met members of the Legislative Council's complaints division, said 100,000 people lived in such inadequate accommodation.

22 Jun 2011 - 12:00am

Destined for life in tiny cage homes

Hong Kong is known around the world as a free and prosperous society. Grinding poverty is uncommon here, yet that doesn't mean no one suffers from want.

Owning their own home is beyond the reach of many citizens because of sky-rocketing property prices and a limited supply of public housing.

7 Apr 2011 - 12:00am

Terrible conditions an 'insult to human dignity'

In an otherwise opulent Hong Kong, more than 100,000 people live in tiny cages and cubicles that the UN has deemed 'insulting to human dignity'.

Most Hongkongers know little about the life of such 'cage dwellers'.

I came to understand the gravity of their situation only a year ago - after living in Hong Kong for six years.

7 Apr 2011 - 12:00am

Rents for city's cage homes rising

The redevelopment of old buildings in Hong Kong is cutting down the supply of 'cage homes' in centrally located areas and forcing up rents for the unemployed and underemployed who can least afford to meet higher living costs.

28 Apr 2010 - 12:00am

Give free lunches to poor children, group urges

The government should provide free lunches for poor children, a welfare group has urged.

On the eve of International Children's Day, the Society for Community Organisation yesterday released the findings of a survey on the impact of the financial meltdown on children from poor, working-class families.

1 Jun 2009 - 12:00am

Protesters seek help for the disadvantaged

Welfare activists, unionists and members of a political group took to the streets yesterday to press for more government funding to help the disadvantaged in this month's budget.

11 Feb 2008 - 12:00am

Seven years too long to wait for CSSA, migrants say

Immigrant single mothers have called on the government to change the welfare policy that allows them to qualify for Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) only after they have lived in Hong Kong for seven years.

1 Jan 2008 - 12:00am

Welfare payments could be cut, official warns lawmakers

Welfare payments could be trimmed, a senior welfare official warned yesterday, as authorities rejected demands to increase payments.

Cheung Doi-ching, principal assistant secretary for labour and welfare, said at yesterday's welfare services panel meeting that there was no need to increase welfare payments, and that some grants could be cut.

30 Oct 2007 - 12:00am

Longer wait this year for public housing rental flats

Public housing applicants face a longer wait this year as the number of flats available has slipped by 10 per cent year-on-year to 29,700 units.

Housing Authority member Wong Kwun said applicants faced waiting an extra two months this year, but some may wait even longer.

The average waiting time is about two years.

26 May 2006 - 12:00am

Community group urges help for aged to fix their flats

The government was yesterday urged to help the elderly repair their dilapidated flats, after a 78-year-old man was killed by debris falling from the ceiling of his Shamshuipo home on Thursday.

Counselling services should also be provided for old people who refused to move despite a dangerous living environment, the Society for Community Organisation warned.

21 Aug 2004 - 12:00am

Drop in eligible bachelors reported

The number of bachelors in Hong Kong has dropped by 2.6 percentage points in the past decade while the proportion of unmarried women rose by one point, according to the Census.

In 1991 about 36.5 per cent of men above 15 were unmarried - this dropped to 34.2 per cent in 1996, and 33.9 per cent, or about 1.11 million, this year.

27 Oct 2001 - 12:00am

New rule benefits children

Orphans and people having to care for elderly parents will be allowed to jump the queue of mainland people waiting to come to Hong Kong.

The Public Security Bureau has altered the points system introduced in May last year to benefit the two types of applicants, according to a report last night by the China News Service.

31 Oct 1998 - 12:00am