The Chest joined hands with The Hong Kong Council of Social Service, the government and the community to launch the Community Housing Movement project.
Addressing the changing and pressing social service needs of Hong Kong people has been one of the key guiding principles of The Community Chest of Hong Kong since it was founded in 1968. We took this mission to a new level on 19 September, when the Chest announced its allocation of $50 million into a new project – the Community Housing Movement. Over the next three years, this pilot project aims to provide 500 co-living units for 1,000 low-income families across Hong Kong, who currently live in cramped and unsafe units while they await public housing.
The Chest has appointed one of its member agencies – The Hong Kong Council of Social Service (HKCSS) – as an intermediary to operate the Community Housing Movement project. The HKCSS is tasked with finding and renovating flats, and engaging social welfare agencies to allocate the flats to tenants, collect rent, and provide support services. To meet operational needs over the coming three years, the HKCSS will receive another $11.5 million from The Community Chest and the government’s Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development (SIE) Fund.
“This $50 million allocation demonstrates the Chest’s commitment to providing innovative and timely services where they are most needed,” said Chest President Mr Charles Lee, who officiated at the launch ceremony, adding that it augurs well for the Chest’s 50th anniversary in 2018.
Aside from improving tenants’ living conditions, the Community Housing Movement creates a unique platform to leverage the goodwill and resources of many stakeholders, including property owners, architects, surveyors, lawyers and engineers, welfare agencies and the government. The project highlights the compassion of Hong Kong’s people, and provides a channel for those who want to support the community.
360 potential units were identified by mid November 2017, and it is expected that 88 of them will be ready for occupation by February 2018. The remaining eligible units will be made available in stages.
Many families live in cramped and unsafe homes.
Renovated flats will be rented out to needy residents.