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UNICEF HK Welcomes the Initiatives of Children’s development in 2023-24 Budget


UNICEF HK Welcomes the Initiatives of Children’s development in 2023-24 Budget


The Hong Kong Committee for UNICEF (UNICEF HK) welcomes the Financial Secretary’s initiatives on children’s and adolescent’s development in the 2023-24 Budget, including IT‑related extra‑curricular activities subsidies for publicly‑funded secondary schools, providing inter‑disciplinary and school‑based comprehensive assistance to pre‑school children with different levels of special needs, setting aside resources to strengthen support for women's development in providing training on child and mental health as well as launch of the Diploma of Applied Education Programme on a regular basis and etc. We believe this array of measures will provide both children and their care-takers an improved community and learning environment.


Although the Pandemic gradually subsided, its long-term impacts have already been impacted into education models as well as mental health of our next generation. Remote learning and online courses have become one of the main modes of children’s education, increasing financial burden of grassroots families. On the other hand, according to data published by the Health Authority, number of new case bookings for child and adolescent psychiatric specialist out-patient (SOP) service have increased from 10,710 cases in 2017-18 to 13,150 cases in 2021-22, a drastic increase of more than 26%.


UNICEF HK cares deeply for the development of every child, we dedicate ourselves in providing a suitable environment and enabling children to adapt quickly to school life under the ‘new normal’. We would like to take this opportunity to urge the government and all sectors of the community to provide adequate support to children in need and grassroots families, narrowing the digital divide. In the meantime, relevant authorities should consider to allocate further resources to support the mental wellbeing of children and their caretakers, strengthening their mental resilience through multi-thong approach involving stakeholders at schools, communities and health care system.