Social Media for Social Good – Talk 1
Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for Disease and Suicide Prevention

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Speaker: Dr. Vince Silenzio (Associate Professor, Departments of Psychiatry, University of Rochester)
Moderator: Dr. Qijin Cheng (Research Assistant Professor, HKJC Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention)
Date : May 3, 2016 (Tuesday)
Time : 10:30 – 11:30
Venue : Studio 2, 2/F, HKJC Building for Interdisciplinary Research, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam.


Alan Turing, a founding father of computer science and famous for his contributions to cracking the Nazi ‘ENIGMA’ codes, died by suicide not long after having been convicted for homosexuality and stripped of his security clearance shortly after World War II. Yet with the development of computers, and the ongoing wave of social and technological innovation and disruption it helped to release, new tools for research have been created, including novel approaches to the study and prevention of suicide. We will discuss a brief overview of the technological changes relevant to this area, and the ongoing developments in areas such as data science, machine learning, and network analysis that are creating the very possibility that Mr. Turing’s “Turing Machines” — better known to us as “computers” — may be the key to understanding health and disease in previously unimaginable ways, and, with great historical irony, to ultimately ending suicide within marginalized communities.

About the speaker

Dr. Silenzio is Associate Professor in the departments of Psychiatry, Public Health Sciences, and Family Medicine at the University of Rochester. He leads the Laboratory of Informatics and Network Computational Studies / Network Science Lab. The LINCS/NetSci Lab focuses on the development of advanced network analytic, machine learning, and related data science methods to public health and biomedical research domains. Dr. Silenzio’s specific research focus is on translational data science applications to study and engage dispersed or otherwise hidden populations for data collection and intervention delivery, in order to develop computational models to inform novel, broadly based preventive approaches to in the areas of suicide prevention and HIV/AIDS. He currently directs research training curriculum of the NIH Fogarty International Center-funded eCapacity program in mobile health and computational social epidemiology at the University of Rochester, which targets scholars from across the Asia and Pacific region.


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Enquiries: Please contact Mr. Rickey YAU at or 28315232

Early Life Risk Factors for Suicide in Young Adults

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Speaker : Professor Ying-Yeh Chen
Date : Feb 26, 2016 (Friday)
Time : 11:00 – 12:30
Venue : Room 1A, G/F HKJC BIR, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam.


This talk includes two studies tapping into early life risk factors for suicide in young adults in Taiwan. The first study investigated the association of perinatal social factors – maternal age, single motherhood, socioeconomic position, birth order and family size with future risk of suicide; and the second study explored the age of exposure to parental suicide and the risk of subsequent suicide completion in young people. Both study made use of linked data from Taiwan Birth Registry and Taiwan Death Registry.   We conclude that early life social circumstances and parental suicide influence future risk of suicide. Factors specific to Taiwanese culture, such as a preference for male offspring and social stigma of suicide, may have influenced gender-specific patterns of risk.

About the speaker

Professor Ying-Yeh Chen is a psychiatrist and a social epidemiologist. She earned her M.D. from Chung-Shan Medical University, Taiwan and got her Doctorate degree from Department of Health and Social Behavior, Harvard University, USA.   She has dedicated to suicide research and suicide prevention work with her clinical duties. Her research focuses on socio-environmental influences on suicide and suicidal behaviors; the social factors she evaluates include the mass-media, gendered socialization, childhood environment and access to suicide means. She also conducts a series of studies on suicide attempters, covering topics on media influences, outcome assessment and rationale for method choice. She is translating her academic finding to policy making. She is Taiwan’s national representative for the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP).


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Enquiries: Please contact Mr. Rickey YAU at or 28315232

QEF Thematic Network on Developing Students’ Positive Attitude and Values – Parent Talks
《培養學生正面態度和價值觀》主題網絡計劃 – 家長講座

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香港大學香港賽馬會防止自殺研究中心獲得優質教育基金的撥款,在本港中小學推行為期四年培養學生正面態度和價值觀的計劃,透過與老師及家長共同合作,希望提高學生的生理及心理健康質素。由於父母對子女成長具有重要而深遠的影響,為促進父母營造正向成長環境及化解常見的親子衝突,本中心將於27/2/2016(星期六)上午舉行兩場家長講座,題目分別為:(一)衝突停得了 及 (二)正向教育造福家庭,費用全免,詳情分列如下,敬希垂注。

日期 2016年2月27日 (星期六)
地點 九龍塘沙福道19號教育局九龍塘教育服務中心西翼4樓422室
時間 上午9時45分至11時15分
對象 中學家長
講者 香港青年協會親子衝突調解中心青年工作幹事 韓曄姑娘
  • 註冊社工,畢業於香港中文大學社工系碩士課程
  • 現為香港調解資歷評審協會認可綜合調解員及香港和解中心註冊調解員
  • 著有於2010年由香港青年協會出版的<<找快樂的媽媽>>
  • 擁有超過二十年青少年及家長工作經驗
  • 藉著影片分享及短講等輕鬆方式,讓家長了解到親子衝突的情況,並明白到處理及預防親子衝突的有效方法,從而改善親子關係
時間 上午11時30分至下午1時正
對象 小學家長
講者 救恩學校 陳梁淑貞校長及姚黎丹雯助理校長
  • 陳校長於香港大學取得學位後,任中學教師、教育局課程發展工作及直資小學創校校長,多次應邀在本港及世界各地進行教育交流。在校內積極推動健康校園政策和措施,培養正面、健康和快樂的新一代。
  • 姚助理校長具教育及基督教神學學位,對學生的生命素質及家長教育特別重視,一直在校園內推展宗教教育、生命教育及正向教育;二十年來持續為家長舉辦具系統性及適切性的教育課程。
  • 讓父母了解正向教育及其重要性
  • 啟發家長樂於持續學習正向教育,並在生活各層面中實踐
  • 期望父母能以正向態度面對家庭大小的壓力與挑戰,從而帶給家人有身心靈的健康,並能關係密切

貴家長如欲參加上述兩個家長講座,請於23/2/2016前填妥網上回條,額滿即止。如有任何查詢,可致電 2831 5229與許小姐聯絡。

Press Conference – From Compensation to Rehabilitation
不止賠償 更要「重返工作」

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From Compensation to Rehabilitation

A Social Review of the Employees’ Compensation Insurance System in Hong Kong
Research Findings Release

In Hong Kong, about 200 fatal and 55,000 to 60,000 non-fatal cases resulting from work-related accidents and diseases have been recorded each year. Occupational rehabilitation with an emphasis on early and comprehensive intervention immediately after injuries has demonstrated to be the international best practice in disability management post occupational injuries. The practice, however, has not beenProfessor Paul Yip listened attentively during the Q&A session widely adopted in Hong Kong. To have an understanding of the underlying reasons, the Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention (CSRP), Department of Social Work and Social Administration of the University of Hong Kong (HKU), has conducted a consultancy project jointly with the Employees’ Compensation Insurance Residual Scheme Bureau (ECIRSB) to review the Employees’ Compensation system for local workers.

The CSRP held a press conference on 14 Dec 2015 to release its latest research findings and recommendations from the project on restoring the well-being of injured workers. Press release is available in both English and Chinese. The Powerpoint presentation is available in Chinese.

At the press conference, Professor Paul Yip presented the latest statistics on work-related deaths and injuries in Hong Kong, and on compensation insurance claims, such as the demographic characteristics of the workers who filed insurance claims, the types of common injuries, and number of working days lost from injury. He also spoke about the major problems in the current system, namely a compensation-focused culture and the physical and psychological barriers that hinder the success of return-to-work for injured workers, such as stress from family and employers, and the loss of self-esteem. Recognizing the challenges encountered by injured workers on the road of recovery, professor Yip stressed the importance of primary, secondary and tertiary prevention strategies and called for a collaborative effort of building a worker-centered system.

DSC00037Doctor Sheung Wai Law, an honorary clinical associate professor from the Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), shared a success story of implementing a multidisciplinary rehabilitation model with the focus on early intervention – the  Multidisciplinary Orthopedics Rehabilitation Empowerment (MORE) Programme. This programme has demonstrated great success in facilitating early and safe return-to-work for injured workers. With the positive impacts brought by the MORE programme, the project hopes to initiate efforts of expanding the programme, so more injured workers can gain access.

Last but not least, the CSRP would like to express gratitude to all the stakeholders who contributed to the project and those who provided utmost support for the project’s effort in propelling meaningful changes for workers health and social well-being of Hong Kong.

Overcoming the Barriers to Suicide Prevention

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Seminar 5 Nov 2015

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Speaker : Dr. Eric D. Caine
Date : Nov 5, 2015 (Thursday)
Time : 10:00 – 11:00
Venue : Studio 2, 2/F, BIR, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam.


To date, there have been no effective, broadly applied, comprehensive and sustainable approaches to preventing suicide and risk-related premature deaths in the United States.  Rare examples of exceptional programs exist – in the US Air Force for about a decade and in the police force of Montreal, Quebec, Canada – but no one has replicated these results, nor is it clear that they are suitable for dealing with the extraordinary diversity within and between states, let alone an entire country.  Preventing suicides and premature deaths – to the extent that there is a substantial reduction in population-level rates – will require systemic, systematically applied and coordinated interventions that, at once, address the needs of both large contributing groups and high-risk individuals; reach across the life course; and are driven by powerful community, health system, and governmental forces.  They will require carefully crafted public health initiatives that reach far ‘upstream’ while also dealing with persons on the ‘edge of death.’  While suicide most often is viewed from the perspectives of individuals who have killed themselves, these deaths are drawn from among diverse groups and populations who share many common characteristics.  Effective prevention programs must, by necessity, address the diversity of these groups even as it is essential meet the needs of individuals suffering great distress.  Suicide prevention must be built as a mosaic; no single piece will convey the entire picture.

The fractured state of suicide prevention efforts reflects the many challenges that must be addressed and barriers overcome in order to build a comprehensive set of approach – what might be called a “full court press” necessary for creating and sustaining the mosaic of efforts required for preventing suicide, attempted suicide, and antecedent risks that are common to these adverse outcomes, as well as other related forms of premature death (e.g., deaths arising from drug overdose).  The presentation will consider promoting effective, broadly based coalitions; the opportunities from forging synergies among diverse groups; and the very central role of “culture change” that will be essential to creating and sustaining a powerfully effective suicide prevention movement.

About the speaker

Dr. Caine has served since 1996 as John Romano Professor and Chair, Department of Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center and Co-Director of the Center for the Study and Prevention of Suicide (CSPS) since its founding in 1998. He has deep experience in the evaluation, management, and aftercare of acutely suicidal individuals, dating to the 1970s. Dr. Caine recently was a member of the Task Force charged with reformulating the National Strategy of Suicide Prevention, a subgroup of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention, and now co-chairs its ‘Impact Group’, which will track the effects of the new strategy on national rates of suicide.


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Enquiries: Please contact Mr. Rickey YAU at or 28315232

World Mental Health Day 2015

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全人健康:尊重與關愛 / Holistic Health: Respect and Care

撰稿:鄭雅心 / By Mabel Cheng

本年度世界精神健康日(World Mental Health Day)的主題為精神健康與尊嚴。對於健康,社會向來很重視。坊間處處都能找到預防生理疾病及養生的資訊,唯獨是忽視了成就全人健康的另一重要元素:精神及心理健康。情緒病在東方文化中可算是個大眾忌諱的話題。每提起情緒病,總會有人覺得不安、避而不談、或對患者有先入為主的負面評價,而造成歧視等問題。這是因為大多數人對於情緒病都有所誤解,認為患上情緒病的人必定是「壞人」、「心理變態」、或是「極度負面」、「失去理智」的人。無可否認這些負面的標籤在不知不覺間剝削了精神病人應得到的公平對待。本年度的主題–尊嚴,所指的正正就是當事人自身的價值和被尊重的權利。






心See 180 青少年精神健康計劃


Holistic Health: Respect and Care

Healthy diets, nutrition, and exercises seem to be hot topics in our daily lives. Tips on maintaining physical health are often widely spread across the world. However, another important element of holistic wellbeing – mental health, is often neglected in many cultures. One of the main reasons is that mental illnesses are being stigmatized all over the world. People tend to associate negative labels with mental illness, such as violence, irrationality, insanity, and sometimes poverty and the lack of education, and so on. In fact, mental illness is like a fever of your mind; it happens when your mental state is weak and the external stress level is high. Everyone has an equal chance in suffering from mental illness. Data has shown that one in four people suffer from mental health problems at some point over the course of their lives.

With the misconception and stigma around mental disorders, people with mental illnesses often receive unequal treatment in the community, such as the lack of job opportunities, respect from others, and in most extreme case, the human right to make their own decisions of who they want to be. These people bear a lot on their own, including the pain from events triggering their emotional turmoil, side effects of treatment, and the unequal treatment from society. The path of recovery is full of challenges, as many forget they have the right to be respected too.

The theme of 2015 World Mental Health Day is dignity. It is a good time to enhance the awareness of mental health and to ponder what could be done to protect the human rights and dignity of the sufferers of mental health conditions. Let’s start with individual efforts – judge less, care more.

For more information on mental health:

Depressed Little Prince

To Compare is to Despair? A Population-Wide Study of Neighborhood Composition and Suicide

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Seminar 9 Oct

Speaker : Dr. Ka-Yuet LIU
Date : Oct 9, 2015 (Friday)
Time : 12:30 – 13:30
Venue : Studio 2, 2/F, BIR, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam.


The suicide risk associated with an individual attribute depends on the context. Eight hypotheses about the interactions between neighborhood composition and country-of-origin, income and socially disadvantaged propositions are proposed based on social support, social comparison and regulation mechanisms. They are tested with a population-based dataset of all 1.4 million adults who lived in the greater Stockholm area in the 1990s. Results from multilevel analyses show that the effects of socio-demographic characteristics on suicide vary with neighborhood composition. The results suggest that neighborhood contexts adversely affect the suicide risk of some while they reduce the risk of the others. The results have implications on policy debates on rising income inequality, increased numbers of migrants and people living in poverty – phenomena that are found in Hong Kong as well as in other countries.

About the speaker

Ka-Yuet Liu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at UCLA. Her research examines the diffusion of behaviors and non-contagious diseases. She joined UCLA in 2012 after working at Columbia University, New York. Her recent publications focus on the rising prevalence of autism. Her paper “Social Influence and the Autism Epidemic” published in the American Journal of Sociology, won the Eliot Freidson Outstanding Publication Award from the American Sociological Association Section on Medical Sociology. Her doctorate research conducted at the University of Oxford focused on the effects of social interactions on suicide. Liu was named a Hellman Fellow (2014-15) for her research on the diffusion of non-medical exemptions to school vaccine requirements in California.


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Enquiries: Please contact Mr. Rickey YAU at or 28315232

Press Conference – WSPD 2015

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Reaching Out & Inspiring Lives
2015 World Suicide Prevention Day Press Conference

September 10th is the World Suicide Prevention Day. The HKJC Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention (CSRP) of the University of Hong Kong (HKU) will hold a press conference on September 9 (Wednesday) with theme “Reaching Out and Inspiring Lives”. The press conference is co-organized by the Boys and Girls Clubs Association of Hong Kong (BGCA) and Caritas Youth and Community Service. The full press release is available for download in Chinese and English.

Professor Paul Yip Siu-fai, Director of the Centre, will at the conference present the latest suicide statistics for Hong Kong, and talk about new strategies for suicide prevention and intervention by better allocation of community resources. The presentation aims to promote public awareness and respect for the needs of people in society, and to encourage acts of reaching out and helping others. Two youths who had had suicidal thoughts will share on how they finally overcame the mental barrier to seek help from others, and how they have worked to help people in return. Their social workers will talk about services for youths.

The CSRP is calling on all sectors of society to care about people with different needs and help bring hope to life.

Date: September 9, 2015 (Wednesday)
Time: 2 pm (Media registration starts at 1:30 pm).
Venue: Studio 1, 2/F, HKJC Building for Interdisciplinary Research, 5 Sassoon Road, Pokfulam, HK
Language: Cantonese (English is available for Q&A session).

Speakers (By alphabetical order of the surnames):

Ah Ho (Alias, Service user)
LUI, Humphrey (Counsellor, The Boys’ & Girls’ Clubs Association of Hong Kong)
Wang Shue (Alias, Service user)
WONG, Eddie (Registered Social Worker, Caritas – Hong Kong Cyber Youth Outreaching Project – Infinity Teens)
YIP, Paul (Director, CSRP HKU)

Presentation at press conference is available for download in Chinese and English .


2:00 – 2:05 Professor Paul Yip releases the latest suicide rates in Hong Kong
2:05 – 2:35 Youths share experiences of battling suicidal ideation with social support. Their social workers share views on reaching out to those in need.
2:35 – 2:45 Professor Yip releases the centre’s recent research findings including:

  • Ÿ   Hong Kong youth’s mental health problems
  • Ÿ   The relationship between suicide and allocation of community resources
2:45 – 3:15 Q&A session

About the Co-organizers

The Boys’ & Girls’ Clubs Association of Hong Kong (BGCA) was founded in 1936. With the mission “Nurture the Young Create the Future’, the Association strives to provide children, youth and their families with various and professional services to nurture their growth. The Association will continue to strive and to create a child-friendly environment for the children and youth. As one of the most reputable NGOs in Hong Kong, we have 75 service units located across the territory and on the mainland, having over 51,226 registered members with 848,267 core attendance.

Caritas Youth and Community Service (CYCS) carries the mission to foster holistic development in the youth and the community through understanding, caring, participating and undertaking of responsibilities. CYCS encourages the youth to participate and build up a sense of responsibility to themselves and the community. This promotes mutual aid and eventually integration in the community. To realize its mission, CYCS provides a wide range of services for children, adolescents and the community at large. Examples include, Community Centres, Integrated Service Centres for Young People, District Youth Outreaching Social Work Services, Children and Youth Centres, School Social Work Services, School Support Services, Counselling Centres for Psychotropic Substance Abusers, Libraries and Study Rooms and After School Care Programme.

For media enquiries, please call Mr. Rickey YAU at (Tel) 2831 5232, or send email to

A “Latte Index” – A Reflection of Income Disparity and Social Mobility

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Date: May 8 2015
Feature Speaker: Professor Paul YIP

The latte index measures how many lattes can be brought by an hour of minimum wage. It somehow reflects the purchasing power and quality of life of an ordinary worker. We shall illustrate the latte index for Hong Kong and other countries and discuss its implications. The income disparity and social mobility especially among the youth will be discussed. Read More

Who is Happier in Hong Kong: Those Earning More or Giving More?

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Date: May 22 2015
Feature Speaker: Dr. Qijin CHENG


To improve the public understanding and awareness on the relationship between poverty and mental well-being, a series of seminars is held by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention, the University of Hong Kong. Dr. Cheng presented the relationship between giving, earning, and happiness.

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