Let Them Fly

Illuminant, Hong Kong

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Established in 2018, Illuminant (registered as The Illuminant Company Limited) is a social enterprise dedicated to introducing the Japanese model of elderly care into Hong Kong.  The concept behind this model is to create an environment and care culture in which older adults can give full play to their own potentials and capacity, enabling the ageing community to look after themselves and enjoy their late years.  Its Chinese name “鐵樹銀花” literally translates to “silver flowers blossoming on iron trees”, an analogy that comes to mean “older people enjoying their life despite being frail”.  

Illuminant derives its stream of income from movie screenings, experiential learning courses, training workshops, and talks, all of which are driven by the aim to enhance and improve the quality of care in elderly homes and family homes across Hong Kong. J-Care, their flagship virtual reality training program, is the first of its kind in Hong Kong, through which people can immerse themselves in a world afflicted by dementia. Through the simulated first-person experience of dementia, participants are able to personally experience the difficulties faced by dementia patients in different scenarios that arise due to different symptoms of the condition. Accompanied by a trainer’s guidance and explanation throughout the simulation, participants emerge from the experience equipped with a better understanding of dementia patients’ needs and feelings. Illuminant’s programs have the potential to reduce the stigma and fear toward different ageing-related conditions in our society, with greater hopes of eliminating the social exclusion experienced by these vulnerable communities.

In 2018, ZeShan Foundation supported the first screening of the Japanese Kaigo movie “Care-Nin” (“照護人 1”) and an accompanying training session, which was well received by practitioners and policy makers in elder care.  In 2021, ZeShan also supplemented Illuminant’s material and staff costs to upgrade both the hardware and software behind their virtual reality program, which also indirectly helped to subsidize the organization’s financial shortage during a period of business re-strategizing. With the goal to broaden the reach of the J-Care concept to a wider professional and public audience, this more advanced VR program will enable the organization to more effectively deliver content remotely in online and mobile learning modes.

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The Japanese Kaigo Movie “Care-Nin” promotes the profession and the value of frontline carers, and brings out an important message that “having dementia does not mean your life is coming to an end.”

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Carers experiencing dementia perspectives through VR devices

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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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