ACS recently met with Joyful (Mental Health) Foundation to understand more about how they fared during the 5th Covid Wave in March 2022:
- What services do you offer, and what challenges do you face?
We provide educational activities and counselling services to promote mental wellbeing. We aim to educate the public on the benefits of psychological counselling and encourage them to seek mental health support when needed.
All our services are subsidised by donations we receive, but the tight budget can only benefit a limited number of low-income families and service users.
2. How were you and your clients affected by the pandemic and 5th wave?
During the peak period, there was a surge of mental health sufferers. Many of them, especially those from disadvantaged families, suffered from severe psychological stress. We were not able to deal with their difficulties immediately because there was insufficient support.
We also recorded a significant decrease in donations in the last few years due to the weakening economy. Most of our attention and resources were focused on battling physical Covid needs, as many service users were unaware of their own mental health needs.
3. How did ACS help you cope with the high demand for mental health support from your beneficiaries?
Through ACS’ Community Support Platform, a donor gave us a donation of HK$100,000 donation, which was used to provide swift complimentary mental health service to patients affected by COVID-19.
4. What are your future plans?
Our goal is to help clients ease their psychological distress and enhance their mental wellbeing. Besides counselling, we would like to provide more comprehensive services to our users, including group activities, mental well-being exercises, workshops and seminars. To do so, we will need to increase our staff team numbers, and fundraise to sustain our work.