Lending A Listening Ear

Mr Lo (left) is engaged in conversation with Befriender Executive Hui Xin (right).

Mr Lo, 85, wakes up each morning simply thankful for being able to experience a brand new day. His jovial demeanour and hearty laughter belies a tough working life that involved heavy labour to make ends meet, up to his retirement. He reflects, “The most important thing is to be happy, don’t worry too much and not to add too much stress upon yourself.”

Though residing by himself in a rental flat at King George’s Avenue, Mr Lo doesn’t feel lonely. Besides interacting with his neighbours, he looks forward to regular visits from Hui Xin, a Befriender Executive under LB’s Befriending services. Hui Xin chats with Mr Lo about anything under the sky, from reminiscing the past to understanding the Gen Z, with the pair forming a bond over time just like a grandparent and grandchild.

As a befriender, Hui Xin reaches out to many seniors in the community such as Mr Lo who could be at risk of social isolation, frequently checking in on them in their homes and engaging them in conversations, thus relieving their loneliness as well as offering them emotional and psycho-social support. 

Mr Lo is full of praise for Hui Xin and other befrienders who brighten up his day with a smile and are ever ready to offer a listening ear. “For people my age, we often desire for and welcome someone to visit us,” he explains. “These youths are very patient with us, otherwise they wouldn’t be doing this work. The sincerity (Hui Xin) shows towards seniors is a hundred per cent.

Hui Xin (right) reaches out to many seniors in the community who could be at risk of social isolation.