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Welfare Reform on the Web (August 2005): Community Regeneration and Development - Overseas

Cynicism about community engagement in Hong Kong

C.C.H. Chiu

Sociological Spectrum, vol.25, 2005, p.447-467

Since the handover of Hong Kong to China in 1997, there has been widespread discontent and dissatisfaction among its people. The government has sought to combat this by promoting community engagement. Responsible citizens are those who render community service and participate in public affairs. Article examines the varying degrees of cynicism about community engagement found in different groups. Survey results show that cynicism is more prevalent among the deprived and socially excluded and people living with dependent children. Author argues that the definition of a responsible citizen should be extended to include those who work hard, pay their taxes and care for their families.

'Payback time': community volunteering among older adults as a transformative mechanism

M. Narushima

Ageing and Society, vol.25, 2005, p.567-584

Volunteering among older Canadians has remained static at 18% of the population group since 1986. However welfare state retrenchment has created a need for more volunteers to deliver social care. Article reports case study research on the volunteering behaviour of a small sample of retired people in Toronto. Results show that the subjects were motivated to volunteer by desires to make use of their skills, pay back society for benefits received, and help the younger generation. There were also indications that organisations could encourage volunteering by offering rewarding learning experiences.

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