The much anticipated Chinese Welfare Trust community research report was presented and launched at a forum on 20 February 2019 at the House of Lords.
Entitled "Chinese Community Centres in the UK: Changing Landscape, Challenges and Strategies for the Future", the report was the product of a community research project commissioned by CWT in January 2018.
For the first time, the changes experienced - and coping mechanisms employed - by Chinese community organisations in the last ten years were properly documented in the form of a published report, based on information gathered from key informants from 14 Chinese community organisations in four selected major UK cities: London, Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool.
Kindly hosted by the Rt Hon Lord McNally, the forum offered an opportunity for community leaders, stakeholders and policy makers to discuss various issues examined in the report. It was very well attended, with representatives of various community organisations from around England, supporters from the business sector and individuals with a distinguished track record on community affairs. Lord McNally remarked the timely publication of the report on assessing the impact that dwindling public resources has had on Chinese community organisations, which is a vital part of British civil society. He also commended the effort of those who actively seek ways to navigate a more positive future.
The forum discussion was led by a panel of distinguished speakers. Circle Steele, CEO of Wai Yin Society in Manchester, shared the success story of her organisation despite the many challenges in securing funding, and how they managed to find a way to cater for the needs of young and old of the local community and continue to grow with good governance. Dr Yeow Poon, who is the co-author of the report and Chair of Chinese Community Centre - Birmingham, espoused the virtue of broadening the user base of mainly-Chinese centres by including residents from other ethnic groups in the local area as a way to increase appeal and establish links with the local community they serve. We also had representatives from Dementia UK - Claire Ferris who is in charge of Business Development and Julie Ann Knight who is a Consultant Admiral Nurse (dementia support specialist) - taking the view that as more and more people live longer into their old age, social support to help people with dementia and their families and carers live with dignity will be relevant across all ethnic groups. Such support should be built on each community's capacity for cohesion and resilience, and this is particularly the case for ethnic minority groups where there is a demand for culturally appropriate services.
A lively floor discussion ensued and this was evidently the result of the insights provided by the panel speakers and the level of interest generated around the publication of the report. Support rallied around the following opinions:
- Statutory funders and private trusts and foundations should put sustainability at the centre of their funding strategy by showing willingness to provide core funding for a period of 3-5 years to ensure a longer-lasting and positive impact is made to the lives of service users of Chinese community organisation.
- A community trust fund should be set up within the UK Chinese community for centres and organisations to apply for core and project funding to improve sustainable service planning and delivery.
- More effort is needed by community leaders to bridge the communication gap between the traditional Cantonese-speaking cohort and the newer and growing Mandarin-speaking population to enhance community cohesion and harmony.
- Chinese community centres across the UK need to adopt a more outward-looking stance and become more inclusive. This means revamping the image and substance of many mainly-Chinese local centres to become a welcoming place to people from a range of different ethnic backgrounds and providing services relevant to their needs.
- Chinese migrants who came to the UK in the 1960s and 1970s are now ageing. They are generally less able to communicate in English and less integrated into British society as compared to later generations. The current provision of social and support services that cater to their cultural needs is woefully inadequate and the demand of which is expected to rise, as more people live longer with conditions such as dementia.
Chinese Welfare Trust feels privileged to be able to bring people from different sectors together and examine a range of pressing issues facing our community. We thank everyone who took part in the forum and their support for this event. Special thanks are due to QED Education Group who kindly sponsored the publication of the report. The conversation has now begun on creating future pathways for the strengthening of Chinese community centres in the UK with a view to providing relevant services and building capacity for sustainability planning.
A newspaper article in Chinese about the forum has been published in Nouvelles d'Europe and can be accessed here.
A copy of the community research report can be found here.
Many congratulations to our Honorary President Mr Stephen Perry, also Chairman of the 48 Group Club, for being awarded the prestigious China Reform and Friendship Medal! The award was presented to him by H.E. Ambassador Xiaoming Liu at the Chinese Embassy in London on 14 Jan.
During the reception at the Embassy to celebrate this joyous occasion, Ambassador Liu gratefully acknowledged the contribution made by the Perry family over the last six decades in enhancing China-UK cooperation on economy, trade, talents and culture.
Mr Eddie Chan, who co-founded CWT with Mr Perry, represented CWT at the awards ceremony. The Co-chairs and trustees of CWT are absolutely delighted that our Honorary President has been bestowed such a great honour by the Chinese Government. No doubt very well-deserved!
The full speech by Ambassador Liu can be found here:
Join us for a discussion in the House of Lords on 20 February 2019 on our newly released research report, "Chinese Community Centres in the UK: Changing Landscape, Challenges and Strategies for the Future".
Launched in October 2018 at our 10th anniversary dinner celebration, this report aims to document the changes and coping mechanisms experienced by Chinese community organisations in the last ten years, based on information gathered from key informants from 14 Chinese community organisations in four major UK cities – London, Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool.
This forum, hosted by Lord Tom McNally, is an opportunity for stakeholders and policy makers to discuss various issues examined in the report. Long-serving community leaders will share their experience on meeting the changing needs of the local community they serve and their insight into long-term service sustainability planning.
Other eminent guest speakers on forum discussion panel include:
-Baroness Sally Greengross OBE, President/CEO, International Longevity Centre
- Dr Yeow Poon, co-author of the report and Chair of Chinese Community Centre-Birmingham
- Ms Circle Steele, CEO, Wai Yin Society, Manchester
- Dr Karen Harrison-Dening, Head of Research and Evaluation, Dementia UK
This forum will take place in Committee Room G of the House of Lords between 6 to 8 pm.
To book tickets for this forum, please visit:
Please join us for this meaningful event. Donations are appreciated if you cannot be with us on this occasion but want to support our outreach work and our new initiative to train the first Chinese-speaking Admiral Nurse in the UK to support families living with dementia.
A complicated mixture of mental health issues and lack of understanding of mainstream social services has left two Chinese brothers in their 60s socially isolated and neglected for over six years.
The case came to light when City West Homes, one of Westminster's largest housing associations, got in touch with Chinese Welfare Trust in July 2018 requesting help with communication with two of their Chinese residents (hereafter referred to as the L brothers).
One of the L brothers had not left the flat for six years until City West Homes carried out a gas safety check at their residence, and found that they were not registered tenants. Their mother, who was the legal tenant, passed away two years before this and had been supporting her sons who have issues with mental health. When they were 'discovered' by City West Homes, the L brothers had not had any contact with health professionals or any meaningful social interaction with the outside world for several years.
Our outreach worker, together with a volunteer, successfully helped City West Homes understand the far-from-ideal health and housing situations the L brothers were in.
As a result of our intervention the L brothers moved to a new home as legal tenants of City West Homes in September, two months after their case had come to our attention. They now also have access to benefits and a GP, as well as receiving support from their local community mental health team.
Working with other Chinese community organisations, we introduced and encouraged the L brothers to participate in luncheon and social clubs run by these centres. They are now slowly getting used to a more normal life.
This year Carers' Rights Day falls on 30 November. To raise awareness of the welfare issues that millions of carers face daily in performing their dedicated but unpaid role, CWT has released a Chinese language article in the Nouvelle d'Europe newspaper.
You can read the article here.
The rights and needs of carers in the Chinese community has been a central theme of CWT's work in the last couple of years. We have given workshops in London-based community centres and organised the first ever Chinese-focused Carers' Week seminar in June 2017.
This year has seen our efforts focusing mainly on carers of dementia sufferers. The Admiral Nurse Project is a new area of service we are developing with Dementia UK and the Chinese National Healthy Living Centre to address this growing area of concern.
We are actively raising funds to train the first Chinese-speaking Admiral Nurse to provide specialist dementia support to Chinese families. As dementia is a slow-developing condition, sufferers often live at home with their family members for an extended period of time, often running into years. It is therefore common for family members to take on the role of a carer at one point or another. Over the course of this illness, the whole family have to learn to adapt to the changing behaviour and declining mental capacity of the dementia sufferer, and many will eventually have to make the difficult decision how best to provide for their loved one's care needs as the illness progresses.
If you think this is a worthwhile cause, please donate to this project and help us establish this service sooner for those who need it in our community.
You can read more about the Admiral Nurse Project in Chinese and English here.
We had a most wonderful time on 1st October celebrating our 10th anniversary at Bright Courtyard Club. The great and the good of the UK Chinese community came to celebrate with us, alongside long-time and new supporters. Generous donors lent their support and their works of art to our charity auction which generated a lot of interests (and bids), and renowned UK-based Chinese soprano Ms Wang Chen gave an enjoyable performance to our dinner guests.
Founders Eddie Chan and Stephen Perry reminded us how far we had come along as an organisation, while current co-chairs Mei Sim Lai OBE DL and Merlene Emerson MBE reaffirmed that we would remain true to our vision. In Lord McNally's entertaining speech congratulating Chinese Welfare Trust's progress into the second decade, he remarked the relevance of the work of CWT in the UK Chinese community where traditional cultural values still matter. We also used this auspicious occasion to launch our community research report on the state of UK Chinese community organisations (due to be published), as well as raise awareness of our new initiative - the Admiral Nurse Project - to help Chinese dementia sufferers and their families. We are most grateful that representatives from Dementia UK came to show us their support.
Of course, what birthday celebration would be complete without the cutting of a cake! Thank you to all who came to share this memorable occasion with us, and we look forward to continue working closely with like-minded individuals and organisations to benefit older Chinese people in the UK.
Read the Nouvelle d'Europe newspaper report in Chinese here.
This year marks our tenth year in serving the Chinese community in the UK.
Right from the start, our mission is to help the isolated and vulnerable older Chinese people living in this country. This year we have launched a new initiative - the Admiral Nurse Project. We are working towards training the first Chinese-speaking dementia support specialist to benefit the Chinese community in the UK.
To celebrate this auspicious occasion, we are holding a special dinner event on Monday 1st October at the Bright Courtyard Club on Baker Street, London.
We will be joined by CWT's founders Mr Stephen Perry, Chairman of The 48 Group Club, and Mr Eddie Chan, Director of the Chinese National Healthy Living Centre.
We are greatly honoured that Lord McNally will be our Guest Speaker.
Tickets cost £88 per person and £830 for a table of ten.
Bookings can be made via Eventbrite by using this link:
To reserve a table of ten, please complete the attached booking form and return it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This dinner event is about celebration as much as it is about raising funds for the important work of CWT with helping the Chinese elderly in the UK. Come and join us!
Well done Team CWT for getting into the final of the charity category in yesterday's Dragon Boat race at the Albert Dock! The sun was shinning (almost too hot) and it was such a family-friendly festival. Thanks to everyone who put in tremendous efforts in paddling the boat and manning the CWT stall. The Duan Wujie 端午節 celebrations this year may be over for now but our efforts in raising awareness of the Admiral Nurse project continues. Help us bring the first Chinese-speaking Admiral Nurse project to reality soon.
We are gearing up for this year's London Hong Kong Dragon Boat Race Festival on 3 June at the Royal Docks Adventure in East London! For the first time Chinese Welfare Trust is fielding a team of 20 paddlers to take part in races in the charity category.
It's our 10th anniversary this year and we'd like to mark it with a series of auspicious celebratory events, and the Dragon Boat Festival in London with international participants and lots of drumming is certainly one to go for! To make it extra special we have decided to fundraise for the first Chinese-speaking Admiral Nurse, a specialist nurse supporting people with dementia and their carers. We are proud to be teaming up with two national charities, Dementia UK and Chinese National Healthy Living Centre, to realise this project to bridge the current service gap within the UK Chinese community.
Please support our boat team and the Admiral Nurse project by clicking on this link:
Our thanks go to this event's main sponsor, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, which has also lent us 8 paddlers to field the team. Look out for 'Team CWT' on the day and hope to see many of you cheering for us on the side!
You can find out more about Admiral Nurses here:
For information on how to get to the boat race venue, please visit:
Watch CWT’s former Chair and current Trustee, Eddie Chan, speak about UK’s Chinese community suffering in silence in Victoria Derbyshire’s programme on the BBC.