Home Visits Preventing Isolation

Christian Action, Hong Kong

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The refugees and asylum seekers (RAS) community is isolated and marginalized in Hong Kong, and whose situation has been compounded by the COVID-19 outbreak, additionally facing language barriers that hinder their access of accurate information on the pandemic, face rising food process, and do not qualify for government relief.

In response to exacerbated needs under the circumstances of COVID-19, Centre for Refugees (CFR) of Christian Action conducted home visits to families and individuals of the RAS community to distribute essential relief items, food vouchers, and information on COVID-19. During these visits, case work teams took the opportunity to assess risks of child or domestic abuse, and also made referrals to empowerment and mental health programs by CFR and partner NGOs.

  

“I think home visits are very important for us. In the office, caseworkers are often so busy, especially now with the renovation- there is no space, no privacy. When you come to our homes, you have time to listen to our stories, and we have time to open up and speak honestly about how we are feeling. Someone might be sad for a long time but not speak about it, until you go to their home and they dare to open up.” 

Refugee Woman, 41, West Africa

 

“This family with three children was so excited when we visited them. The children seldom come outside anymore because of COVID-19, so when we came to their place for the home visit, they talked excitedly about a lot of their things and proudly played with us. “Can you look at my paintings?” It was just a simple question, but the children said it sincerely,  as they hadn’t chatted with any other people for long time. For other people, a visit is just a simple action, but for our clients, it’s making their day.”  

CFR Caseworker, visiting asylum seeker family of three

 

“Through our Zeshan Foundation home visits, we are actually confronted with how our clients are living in Hong Kong. We can even experience part of the their living routine, like how they come out and back home with long commute times. During the visits, we also bring some food and sanitary items to clients- it’s a bit heavy, but at the same time, we finally know how our clients feel when carrying these such items from Centre for Refugees to their homes. To keep their expenses as low as possible, most of them need to live on top floors without lifts. Without the visit, we would not truly know the full extent of our client’s homes- bad conditions, long distances, and such expensive rent. 

Through these home visits, we also come to know that the services we provide to our clients are crucial to them. Although sometimes we cannot do anything to help them, we always try our best to solve their problems, and give whatever we have.”

CFR Caseworker

 

“I’ve been locked down in this building for 12 years, COVID-19 doesn’t affect me at all!” This client is a single man who has lived in the same building for many years, and is still waiting for refugee status determination. He lives with two other flatmates; they spend their time cooking and watching TV together. There is nothing much else he can do during his free time. He was happy that Centre for Refugees caseworkers visited him- that gave him more support and reassurance that he is not being forgotten.  – Asylum seeker
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It is a long established fact that a reader will be distracted by the readable content of a page when looking at its layout. The point of using Lorem Ipsum is that it has a more-or-less normal distribution of letters, as opposed to using ‘Content here, content here’, making it look like readable English. Many desktop publishing packages and web page editors now use Lorem Ipsum as their default model text, and a search for ‘lorem ipsum’ will uncover many web sites still in their infancy. Various versions have evolved over the years, sometimes by accident, sometimes on purpose (injected humour and the like).

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