Sister City Exchange Addresses Elder Services in Shanghai, Chicago

Categories: China News,News,Social Services News


A delegation of social services professionals from the Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau visited Chicago from August 1-6, 2016, for an immersive look into Chicago’s aging policies and programs. This third annual exchange follows a delegation from Shanghai visiting Chicago in 2014, and a delegation from Chicago visiting Shanghai in 2015. The 2016 program focused specifically on program assessment, financing of services, legal regulations and living options for the elderly in Chicago.

Chicago and Shanghai have much to learn from each other about how to care for their respective aging populations. 2.7 million of Shanghai’s 24 million residents are aged 65 or older, equivalent to Chicago’s entire population. Shanghai is committed to seek best practices from all over the world to develop a long-term care system for its enormous aging population. Chicago, meanwhile, is looking for new ideas to help face the challenge of planning and delivering services for older Chicagoans, including the large tide of aging baby boomers.

The six-member delegation included:

Mr. ZHANG Fan, Deputy Division Chief of the Social Welfare Department, Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau (SCAB) | Ms. KE Ying, Section Chief, Old-age Work Division, SCAB | Mr. REN Zetao, Section Chief, Social Welfare Division, SCAB | Mr. ZHANG Chi, Section Chief, Policy and Regulations Division, SCAB | Ms. JIN Ling, Old-age Programs Research Fellow, Shanghai Research Center on Aging | Ms. LU Yue, Interpreter, Shanghai International Exchange Center for Social Welfare

During the week, the delegation visited The Alzheimer’s Association, Elderly Services Department of the Chinese American Service League, Circuit Court of Cook County, Elder Law & Miscellaneous Remedies Division, The Clare, Elder Justice Center of Cook County, Long Life Senior Housing, Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Mather – More Than a Café, Montgomery Place, Rush University Medical College, University of Illinois at Chicago Institute for Health Research and Policy and the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health.

The exchange concluded at the University of Illinois at Chicago with a half day conference August 5th in both Mandarin and English on Global Aging and Quality Services: Tales of Shanghai and Chicago to present and discuss key topics covered during the week with the public.

The mission of this delegation was facilitated by lively exchanges among members of CSCI’s Social Services Subcommittee of the China Committee who represent multiple disciplines (social work, health services, law, medicine, psychology, sociology) and fields (housing, family and social services, geriatrics, hospice and end-of-life care, long-term care, public guardianship, research).

The committee is comprised of the following individuals:
Guy Alito, University of Chicago | Susan Alito | James Burton, Office of the City of Chicago Public Guardian | Claudia Cook, LivHOME | Ahmad Djangi, City of Chicago Department of Children and Family Services | Dr. XinQi Dong, Rush University | Nancy Flowers, Rainbow Hospice and Palliative Care | Joyce Gallagher, Area Agency on Aging | Charles Golbert, Office of the Cook County Public Guardian | John Holton, Concordia University | Dorothy Li, The John Marshall Law School | Debbie Liu, Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community | Joseph Monahan, Monahan Law Group, LLC. | Naoko Muramatsu, University of Illinois at Chicago | Andy Teitelman, Chicago Housing Authority | Diane Williams | Bernie Wong, Chinese American Service League | Esther Wong, Chinese American Service League

Next year’s exchange will be hosted by the Civil Affairs Bureau in Shanghai. If you would like to apply to join the delegation, please check the CSCI website’s Social Services page early next year for the dates and application.