Speech at Panel on Public Service

III. Promotion of volunteer service in the civil service

Types of volunteer service

There was a suggestion that the Administration should organize more diversified volunteer activities to a wider range of target groups (such as providing regular tutoring to children from grassroots families, organizing activities for persons with intellectual disability, etc.) to encourage more civil servants to use their expertise to serve the public through volunteer service. By doing so, civil servants could understand the public needs for better delivery of public services, which would in turn build public trust in the civil service.

The Administration advised that CSB had all along been encouraging colleagues to unleash their potential to volunteer for community service. For example, volunteer teams of works departments would provide home cleansing service and repairing service for electrical appliances to the elderly. Civil servants who were familiar with information technology would teach the elderly to use smartphones and common mobile applications. Colleagues from the ambulance group would volunteer to promote first-aid in the community. However, in the past three years, many volunteer services had been suspended due to social distancing and other anti-epidemic measures, and civil servants were dedicated to cooperating with volunteers from various sectors in the community in the fight against the epidemic. As the epidemic had notably stabilized, the volunteer teams had been actively planning and taking forward regular volunteer services by joining hands with local communities and collaborating with other charitable organizations since mid-2022. CSB would continue to encourage civil servants to serve the community through volunteer service according to their areas of expertise.

Cooperation with other organizations

Member suggested that the Home and Youth Affairs Bureau (“HYAB”) could arrange the District Services & Community Care Teams (“Care Teams”) to closely collaborate with the volunteer teams of B/Ds in organizing more volunteer activities in the districts. The Administration took note of members’ suggestion and advised that CSB would liaise with HYAB to consider lining up volunteer teams of B/Ds to collaborate with the Care Teams in providing volunteer service in the districts.

here was a suggestion that the Administration could consider recruiting retired civil servants to form or to participate in volunteer teams of B/Ds so that the pool of volunteers in the civil service could be expanded for emergency response. Some members pointed out that some civil servant unions/associations had formed volunteer teams of retired civil servants and provided active volunteer service. They asked if the Administration would consider connecting with and offering support (such as provision of relevant training and sharing of relevant information) to these volunteer teams.

The Administration noted members’ suggestions and advised that CSB would encourage retired civil servants to set up volunteer teams and B/Ds to invite retired civil servants to participate in volunteer activities organized by B/Ds. On the volunteer teams set up by retired civil servants, the Administration was more than willing to share the relevant information with these volunteer teams upon receipt of their contact information from members. For example, they could be invited to participate in the sharing sessions organized for the volunteer teams of B/Ds.