SINGAPORE / TODAY / April 30, 2010
Some upkeep children's homes, do shopping for them
Old folks in Singapore an asset
Older folks in Singapore are giving more help to their children and grandchildren than the other way around. Straits Times Photo: Chew Seng Kim
In South Korea, the survey found 37 per cent of seniors - more than Singapore's 12 per cent - helped their children or grandchildren.
And more seniors here rely on their children for financial help: Some 18 per cent were receiving money compared to 5 per cent who gave something to their children.
As demographic changes sweep the globe, conference participants debated various issues concerning intergenerational cohesion.
Council for Third Age board member Aline Wong lamented that some seniors have become "grandparents on-demand" - called upon to accompany their grandchildren to tuition classes and meet with their children and grandchildren only a few times a year.
She suggested youth organisations get more parents on board their programmes, rather than just focusing on relations between grandparents and grandchildren.
While the Government has in place policies such as the CPF Minimum Sum Top-Up, Parents' Relief and Grandparents' Relief, Minister-in-charge of Ageing Issues Lim Boon Heng urged the community to "internalise" intergenerational cohesion in order for it to be sustainable.
"It is not just about tax-relief or top-up grants," he said. [rc]
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