Frequently Asked Questions

I am a tertiary student. Can I apply for credit transfer for participating in the Programme?

The Programme is not part of the credit-based courses offered by tertiary institutions. Members should arrange to enquire with their institutions on credit transfer matters. The HAB will provide assistance as needed and appeal to tertiary institutions to accommodate students taking part in the Programme as far as practicable.

I am a Mainland/overseas exchange student. Can I participate in the Programme?

The main target of the programme is young people of Hong Kong. Therefore, we target at permanent Hong Kong residents aged 18-29. Applications from Mainland/overseas exchange students aged 18-29 may be considered on their own merits under special circumstances.

Do I need to procure insurance on my own? What is the coverage of the insurance?

Yes. Members need to procure insurance with the coverage suggested by the HAB and submit a copy of the insurance documents to the HAB at least 7 days before departure. The HAB will disburse relevant expenses on an accountable basis within a specified limit. Members may also procure additional insurance according to their own needs at their own costs.

Shall I arrange a medical examination on my own before the departure? What medical support will be provided at the place of service?

As there are certain differences in living environment and conditions between the place of service and Hong Kong, members should fully understand the requirements and arrangements of the Programme and consider whether their health condition is fit for the Programme.

Medical service facilities and hospitals are available in the vicinity of the place of service. Members may contact the school served or the authority concerned as and when necessary.

Can my family/friends visit me at my place of service during the period of service?

Yes. Members’ family/friends may visit them during their leave provided that their service is not affected.

I am concerned that I may not be able to meet the daily expenses during the period of service. What areas will government’s financial support cover?

To encourage young people to actively take part in the Programme, the Government will, in addition to a monthly stipend of RMB 3,200, provide members with on-campus accommodation, travel expenses for two round-trip to and from Hong Kong and the place of service in each semester and insurance expenses.

I have no knowledge of the place of service and am concerned that I may not be able to adapt to life there. What support will be provided by the Government in this respect?

Members are required to attend all training sessions held in Hong Kong to get prepared and informed of the scope of service before departure. The training will cover briefing on the Service Corps, basic adaptation skills, training in volunteer service, basic teaching skills and experience sharing of volunteer service etc. The HAB will also engage professionals to members during the service period, such as visiting the members regularly, helping them in adaptation and providing emotional support.

Will there be separate accommodation for male and female members?

Yes.

May I arrange accommodation on my own?

Since most of the places of service are far away from urban area, for safety sake, we do not recommend that members arrange their own accommodation. Should there be other special needs, members may contact the school served or the authority concerned in the Mainland. Moreover, in case that the above-mentioned parties cannot provide accommodations, the Home Affairs Bureau (HAB) will look for a suitable accommodation for the delegates prior to the commencement of the service.

Are internet facilities provided in the accommodation on campus?

Wireless internet access is available in the accommodation on campus.  Members may purchase the associated equipment on their own.

Will meals be provided by the service units?

Most schools served have canteens and lunch will normally be provided on school days.  Members are free to arrange their own meals at their own expenses.  Members should arrange their meals during their leave.

Am I free to choose the place of service and decide on the scope of service?

The HAB will invite persons with relevant experience to form a selection panel to conduct an interview for recruiting suitable applicants to the Programme.  The selection panel will assign service placements for applicants with reference to their background and strengths.  Applicants may also indicate their preference in the section entitled “Self Introduction” in the application form.  The HAB shall reserve the right to final decision.

The main scope of service of the Programme is teaching assistance.  Members may exchange views on the actual scope of service with the school served after they arrive at the place of service.   Members may also take part in other services depending on the circumstances, the needs of the school served and the agreement reached between both parties.

Will there be time for self-arranged activities during the service period?

Yes. Generally speaking, subject to teaching schedule, local government authorities will arrange for members to conduct suitable visits, other voluntary services and /or exchange activities at least once a month, including visit to the city, local villages, government organisations/enterprises and exchanges with local youths on Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays..  If no particular arrangements have been made in the week, members may enjoy self-arranged activities.  Moreover, members will be given about one week of vacation leave in each semester.

Will members be responsible for compensation for failure to complete the Programme?

The Programme is a long-term project on youth development and volunteer service.  We hope that each and every member can complete the Programme to help those in need in the Mainland. Members who discontinue service during the period of service should provide reasonable explanation in writing, otherwise they are required to bear the expenses for the return trip on their own. The HAB will also deduct the stipend on a pro-rata basis.

May I apply for an extension of service period as I wish?

Upon completion of service, members may apply to the HAB for an extension of service period.  Depending on the specific needs and arrangement of the service placements, members may be arranged to continue the service in the same school and financial support will continue to be provided by the HAB.

Can members apply for leave during the period of service to handle important matters?

To avoid affecting the progress of curriculum, members should arrange to handle the matters during their leave as far as possible.  Should there be special needs, members should discuss with the school concerned for the most appropriate arrangement.  The HAB will consider approving the case on its own merit.

If emergency support is needed during service in the Mainland, which organisations can I contact?

If support is needed for matters relating to everyday life, members may contact the school served or the authority concerned in the Mainland. They may also contact the officer responsible for support of the Programme, the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in Guangdong and the HAB.

Where can I find updated information on the Programme?

Please check out the programme website <www.servicecorps.hk> for updated information.