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Chapter 3 Multi-generational Living as Future of Elderly Housing

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3.02 ‘Active Ageing’ ‘Active ageing’ refers to the continuing participation in social, economic, cultural, spiritual and civic affairs, aside from staying physically active. As ageing take place within the context of friends, work associates, neighbours and families, then a sense of interdependence and intergenerational solidarity are also important for ‘active ageing’.2

When making definition for ‘successful ageing’, many would focus on objective measures relating to physical and mental health. In fact, subjective quality of life is more important. A majority of elderly people rate themselves as ageing successfully even when they do not meet all the physical or mental criteria.3 Optimism, sense of fulfilment and active social lives are seen as more important.4

A lot has changed in Hong Kong society in past decades. Domestic household size has been shrinking as more married couples tend to form families with fewer children. The proportion of elderly people living alone has been increasing with a sharp drop in those living with their own children. Traditional Chinese culture has strongly emphasized family togetherness, and thus most elderly view living under the

FIGURE 3.01 Percentage of HK elderly (aged 65 and over) living alone

16% 15% 14% 13% 12% 11%

1990

1995

2000

2005

2010

Year 5 Thesis  

Ageing in Hong Kong? Study on Local Elderly Housing & Multi-generational Living in Future

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