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Working with Youth-at-Risk in Hong Kong

Francis Wing-lin Lee

Publication Year: 2005

This volume is a collection of chapters covering various aspects of the youth problem. Besides examining the causes of the problem and the principles behind the solution, different and effective approaches in working with the various categories of at-risk youths are introduced. The overall aim is to help this group of young people to lead a healthy life and integrate into society as contributing members. The book contains both theory and practice, and is suitable for social work students and professionals.

Published by: Hong Kong University Press, HKU

Title, Dedication, Copyright

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pp. vii-ix

It was more than thirty years ago that I started my career as a social worker. My first job was with the Government's Social Welfare Department and my assignment was to work as a Probation Officer to serve the Juvenile Court. At that time, we were already using the term "youth-at-risk", though its Chinese equivalent, "feizai", referred to youths whose social behaviours were not so acceptable. Since then, I...

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pp. xi-xii

A colloquial term for "Youth-at-risk" is "Marginal youth". It connotes "standing on the edge of becoming a juvenile delinquent". This type of young people are considered quite risky as they are likely to break the law and could become official delinquents. Around 6,000 juveniles (7- 15) have been arrested each year over the past 10 years (Commissioner...


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pp. xiii

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1. Introduction: The Phenomena of "Youth-at-Risk" in Hong Kong

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pp. 1-5

From a developmental perspective, every one of us has different developmental tasks to fulfill at different stages in the life process and is prone to be at risk if the tasks are not fulfilled/satisfied. But why are young people or adolescents usually regarded as more at risk? Young...

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2. Service Programmes for "Youth-at-Risk" in Hong Kong

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pp. 7-13

The destructive power of young people had caught the government's attention by the mid-1960s after a series of youth riots, which demonstrated how destabilizing a force youth power could be on society (Commission of Inquiry, 1967). By the late 1970s, the delinquent behaviours of young people had become so alarming that it led to the...

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3. Working with Youth Gangs: An RGC Approach

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pp. 15-26

Youth gangs are usually of a neighbourhood basis (Cartwright, 1975; Cooper, 1967; Klein, 1971; Lo, 1992; Spergel, 1995). They are identified as having "anti-social", "delinquent", "violent" and "at-risk" natures (Cartwright, 1975; Feldman, 1985; Goldstein and Huff, 1993; Klein, 1971, Lee et al., 1996/97 Spergel, 1965). They exist well before detach...

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4. Working with Young Substance Abusers: A Harm Reduction Approach

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pp. 27-37

At the beginning of the twenty-first century, the drug/substance use scene in Hong Kong has been changing drastically, particularly with regards to young people. With the imported rave/disco and dance culture from the West, the number of young people taking Ecstasy (XTC) and Ketamine (K) has risen in the last few years. Taking Ecstasy has become...

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5. Strategies for Tackling School Bullying: A Whole-School Approach

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pp. 39-52

Bullying among school pupils is not a new phenomenon. The fact that some pupils are persistently rejected, harassed and physically hurt by other pupils has been described in mass media as well as in literature. In Hong Kong, there has been a growing concern about the violent and bullying behaviour of students in the media. In 1997, a boy was tortured ...

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6. Police Diversion Measures for Juveniles at Risk

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pp. 53-73

What is diversion? How does it work? Does it work? Although these questions seem simple enough, the answers are more complex and must be understood in particular historical, cultural and social contexts. At a broad level, diversion is a strategy designed to divert offenders from the criminal justice system. In some instances, it is used as a pre-arrest ...

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7. Community Support Service Scheme — Project Phoenix

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pp. 75-86

The issue of youth-at-risk (YAR) has raised much concern from the public and the government. There is an outcry for more allocation of resources for services to the YAR, and more funding should be pooled into related services. The recent expansion of Community Support Service Schemes (CSSSs), District Outreaching Service, Young Night...

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8. Effectiveness of Services to "Youth-at-Risk": The Case of Outreaching Social Work

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pp. 87-98

There are various kinds of services available to the at-risk youth who exhibit different degrees of risky behaviours. Among the services, Outreaching Social Work (OSW) has the longest history of development since June 1979. In this paper, the first focus will be on discussing the ...

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9. Rethinking Youth Problems in a Risk Society: Some Reflections on Working with "Youth-at-Risk" in Hong Kong

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pp. 99-112

Youth has long been a concern of the government and the social work profession in Hong Kong, both in terms of care and control. Despite the recent re-organization and restructuring of service at the district level, youth work remains one of the largest service areas in the terrain of social work in the SAR. Notwithstanding this, however, the history...

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10. Working with "Youth-at-Risk": The Way Ahead

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pp. 113-117

Different chapters have discussed the various approaches to working with YAR who have different problems. The approaches employed to work with YAR, to a large extent, depend on our understanding of the causes of their problems. There can be various perspectives on understanding youth problems/deviance. These include the...


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pp. 119-120


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pp. 121-144


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pp. 145-146

E-ISBN-13: 9789882203105
Print-ISBN-13: 9789622097612

Page Count: 160
Publication Year: 2005

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Youth with social disabilities -- Services for -- China -- Hong Kong.
  • Problem youth -- China -- Hong Kong -- Social conditions.
  • Problem youth -- Services for -- China -- Hong Kong.
  • Youth with social disabilities -- China -- Hong Kong -- Social conditions.
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