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U3A Envisions Greater Participation in Community Affairs

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U3A Envisions Greater Participation in Community Affairs

17 Mar 2016

Founded by HK Electric and the Hong Kong Council of Social Service (HKCSS) in 2006, the U3A Network of Hong Kong (U3A) today (17 March) celebrated its 10th anniversary and encouraged more retirees to take an active role in community affairs.

Driven by the "Learning for Pleasure" motto, U3A has organised more than 4,600 courses in its first decade, providing more than 70,000 learning opportunities for local retirees. The network now comprises 48 self-learning centres throughout the territory.

Speaking at today's ceremony, Managing Director of HK Electric, Mr. Wan Chi-tin, noted that more retirees are now more vocal in voicing their views on elderly-related issues. “Entering into the next decade, we expect U3A students to be more active in social participation and share their insights with the community," Mr. Wan said.

Also officiating was Professor John Leong, Chairman of the Hospital Authority, who inaugurated the U3A ten years ago. Professor Leong was glad to witness that U3A had turned local retirees from being potential liabilities to society to valuable social assets. He commended HK Electric, HKCSS and U3A students for laying a good foundation to address Hong Kong's aging population.

Professor Leong added, "The mission of the Hospital Authority has been to provide world-class medical services while at the same time, promoting public health to relieve the pressure on hospital services. The vision of active aging advocated by U3A is in tune with our mission."

Mr. Chua Hoi-wai, Chief Executive of the HKCSS, hailed the achievements of U3A in the past ten years as remarkable. "Looking ahead, U3A will be more innovative in course curriculum, more outreaching in partnership projects and more active and engaging in community issues. The U3A will continue to be an important platform for local retirees to care for and serve the community."

In fact, U3A students have been contributing to different social discussions over the years, putting forward their views on topics including silver hair market development, protection of elderly consumer rights and cardio vascular fitness.

Nearly 800 U3A students, families and friends attended the anniversary ceremony at Heung Yee Kuk Building in Shatin today, enjoying the performances and sharing the visions and aspirations for the future development of U3A.

Mr. Wan concluded that HK Electric and HKCSS would continue to support the development of U3A and contribute to efforts in addressing the needs of Hong Kong's aging population.

The U3A Network is sponsored by the HK Electric Centenary Trust and administrated by HKCSS. Elderly service agencies receive funding to operate self-learning centres that provide courses conducted by the elderly for the elderly. For more details on the U3A, visit www.hkelectric.com or www.u3a.org.hk, or contact HKCSS at 2876 2427.

U3A students demonstrate their sporty side and learning spirit to the officiating party who include Professor John Leong (back row L1), Mr. Wan Chi-tin (back row R1) and Chua Hoi-wai (front row R1).

U3A students demonstrate their sporty side and learning spirit to the officiating party who include Professor John Leong (back row L1), Mr. Wan Chi-tin (back row R1) and Chua Hoi-wai (front row R1).

100 year-old Wong Wai-chiu (2nd from right), the eldest U3A student who is still actively learning and teaching at U3A, celebrates the Network’s 10th anniversary with officiating guests.

100 year-old Wong Wai-chiu (2nd from right), the eldest U3A student who is still actively learning and teaching at U3A, celebrates the Network's 10th anniversary with officiating guests.

Mr. Wan-Chi-tin expects U3A students to be more active in social participation and share their insights with the community.

Mr. Wan-Chi-tin expects U3A students to be more active in social participation and share their insights with the community.

Professor Leong commends HK Electric, HKCSS and U3A students for laying a good foundation to address Hong Kong’s aging population.

Professor Leong commends HK Electric, HKCSS and U3A students for laying a good foundation to address Hong Kong's aging population.

Chua Hoi-wai says U3A would be more innovative in course curriculum, more outreaching in partnership projects and more active and engaging in community issues.

Chua Hoi-wai says U3A would be more innovative in course curriculum, more outreaching in partnership projects and more active and engaging in community issues.

U3A students performing K-Pop dance “Nobody”.

U3A students performing K-Pop dance "Nobody”.

Officiating guests congratulate U3A student representatives for successfully completing their studies for 2015-2016.

Officiating guests congratulate U3A student representatives for successfully completing their studies for 2015-2016.

Officiating guests celebrate the U3A 10th anniversary with 800 U3A students, families and friends.

Officiating guests celebrate the U3A 10th anniversary with 800 U3A students, families and friends.