With some 120,000 people jobless in Hong Kong, the unemployment rate stands at 3.5 per cent and is expected to reach four per cent. Oxfam Hong Kong and other local groups held an 'Unemployment Summit' at which many unemployed shared their stories. A single parent, mother of two: 'I do not want to give my name. I don't want my neighbours to see me in the newspaper, and I don't want my children to be teased by their classmates. Also, if I am in the papers, some employers might hesitate to hire me. 'I receive social security assistance, which makes me feel pretty disconnected from society - it's a burden getting it, I really don't like it, but I have no choice. 'Because there is no child care provided by the Government, I cannot leave my kids and go to work. Couldn't the Government have some flexible child care service?' An unemployed couple: 'My husband and I are both jobless, and it has made our relationship difficult. 'One employer said I even needed experience before I could get a job as a dishwasher! We have been receiving social security assistance for one year - there is no other way. For the past six months, our family has been collecting bottles, cans and boxes. We make very little money, and when a relative died on the mainland, we did not have enough money to go to the funeral. Sometimes I don't eat so my kids can eat more. 'My husband and I were thinking of trying to be hawkers, but we don't have the money to buy the start-up goods.' Many skills, still no job: 'I have lots of skills because I have had many jobs in different areas. But I have lost job after job, mainly due to the decline of one industry after another, such as garments. 'My last job was doing data entry at $7,500 a month. For three years, I had no pay increase. I was afraid of being laid off because I knew my employer had money in the stock market and the possibility of bankruptcy could not be rule out. 'I started looking for a job as a clerk, but the Labour Department introduced me to a sales job paying $3,800 a month. 'The employer said: 'You're too old to be a clerk'. 'Another company finally offered me a job at $6,000. The difference in salary was fine with me because at least the company seemed steady. 'I resigned from the data-entry job. Then the employer lowered his offer to $5,000. I refused and was out of work again. 'Luckily, I got another job. But my employer has already asked if he could lower my salary.' Since 1976, Oxfam Hong Kong has worked in 40 countries. In Hong Kong, it works with local disadvantaged groups, such as low-income workers, single-parent families, the disabled, and migrant workers. Oxfam Hong Kong is an independent development and relief agency which works with the poor regardless of race, sex, religion or politics. For more information, call 2520-2525.