PETathon – A Walk with Pets to Support Ronald McDonald House Charities®
With the support of our co-organizer – Dharma Nature Preaching Hall, the PETathon was joyfully held on December 2, 2018 in blissful weather. Around 300 enthusiastic participants and their beloved pets, including dogs, cats and turtles, walked to raise funds for children with serious illnesses and their families at the Ronald McDonald House Charities®. The event would not have been possible without the support of the keen walkers, the very energetic furry and non-furry friends and the devoted team of volunteers. The PETathon marks a positive start to the month of December and we hope that seeds of compassion were sowed among all participants.
Over 30 representatives of the Foundation's partners and friends visit SOWGOOD!
Meeting of Minds and Hearts at SOWGOOD!
A strong proponent of synergistic collaborations, the Foundation hosted an Info & Networking Session for our partner NGOs and friends at SOWGOOD! Positive Education Centre, a flagship partnership with St. James’ Settlement on November 12, 2018. More than 30 representatives from the NGO and education sector joined us at our newly established experiential learning gallery to learn about our program at SOWGOOD! The group went through the journey designed to foster the ten character strengths of our young participants in great enthusiasm. The afternoon was rounded up with a very meaningful and stimulating exchange of ideas on how we could further the promotion of positive education in Hong Kong collectively. Seeds have been planted and we look forward to the blossoming of innovative initiatives and fresh partnerships advancing our work in the education sector.
Ven. Chang Lin, Lowell and Venus enjoying the dialogue on stage.
A much enthusiastic audience
The audience practicing breathing under Ven. Chang Lin's guidance.
「廷驊法雨」講座系列: 不羈之後的海闊天空 was successfully held on October 23, 2018 at Wang Gungwu Lecture Hall of The University of Hong Kong (“HKU”). Facilitated by Dr. Venus Wong, in this second session of the talk series, renowned composer and singer, Mr. Lowell Lo (盧冠廷) and Ven. Chang Lin (常霖法師) shared their unique life stories of how they went from their wild and carefree days to finding peace and wisdom.
With the support of our co-organizer – HKU Centre of Buddhist Studies, a full house of university students, academics, NGO representatives, friends from the community gathered to hear how the two speakers handled challenges in life. Despite having learning difficulties, both speakers found their passion in their creative sides and became a professional musician and photographer respectively. To the two of them, discovering and pursing their passion was what guided them through stormy conditions when they were younger so they encouraged students to follow their hearts and do what they truly enjoy.
From his personal experience, Lowell urged parents not to be too harsh on their children. Given the space to explore, although not necessarily the most academically-able, young people would find their gifts in other areas and thrive.
While for Ven. Chang Lin, he shared that most people relate happiness to financial success but satisfaction derived from material possessions was not sustainable. When still a layperson, he had the habit of doing breathing practice every morning and evening. On one birthday years ago, he woke up and made up his mind to become a Buddhist monk to find lasting peace and joy. He then guided the audience to do a short breathing exercise. He invited everyone to cultivate the habit of practicing breathing exercises for 10 to 15 minutes each morning and night for three months and he promised that positive change would happen. Awareness practice resembles the different challenges we face in life. There will always be distractions and obstacles yet every time we overcome a hurdle and avoid temptations, we are strengthening our physical and mental muscles to cope with difficulties ahead and are one step closer to a better self.
Both speakers found great motivation and solace in their passions, one in music and the other in photography. Apart from their creative energies, what is equally important is their positive mindset which enabled them to persevere and flourish even in testing times. Their optimism was inspiring and the audience left the auditorium with a sense of hope and tranquillity that evening.
Teams celebrating with their school principals, teachers and NGO partners
Youth ImpACT Award Final Ceremony 2017/18 – Innovate Today, Change Tomorrow
The Youth ImpACT Award (“YIAA”) celebrated the achievements of the ten finalist teams at the Final Ceremony 2017/18 on October 6, 2018 at the Hong Kong Red Cross Headquarters. Attended by 200 like-minded school principals, teachers, NGO colleagues and social innovators, the Ceremony was a showcase of the participating youth’s innovativeness, team work and perseverance.
The occasion was graced by the presence of judges including Mr. Cheung Wai Hing, Trustee of the Foundation, Mr. Joe Chiu, Committee Member of the Standing Committee of The Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs Association representing the two Co-presenters and two very experienced social innovators, Mr. Kelvin Cheung, Chief Operation Officer of Goodlab and Ms. Wendy Cheung, Senior Manager, Corporate Venture (Partnership & Alliance) of St. James’ Settlement.
The ten teams of finalists were selected through a pool of more than 300 ideas by online voting, internal screening and a Pitch Day in the past year. The teams shared their prototyping experiences during the summer and reflected on their learning. A common theme running through the teams’ presentation is the importance of determination and continued hard work which brought them thus far. All judges expressed their admiration towards the finalists’ in-depth reflection and encouraged students to carry on being a social innovator to learn and serve. Heartfelt congratulations were also sent to the following award winners:
– FMLA003 (Shun Lee Catholic Secondary School)
– 梅菜衝鋒 (Shun Lee Catholic Secondary School)
– 我們這一隊 (PLK Yao Ling Sun College)
– 藍魚玲 (CCC Yenching College)
– DGS0203 (Diocesan Girls’ School)
– 童舟共濟 (Pui Ching Middle School)
– Agent M (Tak Oi Secondary School)
– 伸出援手 錄音救人
– 錄音救人捲土重來 (Open track)
– 黑兵道 白兵道
– 黑白兵軍團 (Open track)
– 待定 (Shun Lee Catholic Secondary School)
– Agent M (Tak Oi Secondary School)
Best Project by Audience
– 我們這一隊 (PLK Yao Ling Sun College)
– 黑兵道 白兵道
– 黑白兵軍團 (Open track)
2018/19 Cycle of YIAA is now open for application and we look forward to collaborating with more schools and NGOs to drive social good. For more details, please visit www.yiaa.hk or contact Ms. Rachel Yuen at firstname.lastname@example.org or 2823 8638.Find out more about the ten finalist ideas here.
St. James Settlement x The D. H. Chen Foundation SowGood! Positive Education Center Launched!
The Foundation is proud to announce that SowGood! Positive Education Center, a flagship partnership with St. James Settlement (“SJS”) has been launched! The first of its kind in Hong Kong, the Center aims to drive a Positive Education Movement with like-minded parties across different sectors and together, create an enabling learning environment for young children to cultivate positive character attributes. Building around 10 core character strengths that would prepare young children to live a purposeful and meaningful life in the future, the Center offers an array of programs including experiential learning journeys, teacher training, parent workshops and community talks. The Foundation and SJS look forward to having more community members join the Movement and info of the Centre could be found at http://sowgood.sjs.org.hk/zh-hk.
The Foundation and the Dharma Nature Preaching Hall are delighted to announce “PETathon – 伴您同行。帶著寵物去幫人”, a charity walk for animal lovers and their beloved pets to be held on December 2, 2018 (Sunday). To raise funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities® in support of families with seriously ill children receiving medical treatment at a hospital in Shatin, participants will take a leisurely stroll along the Shing Mun river nearby with their furry or non-furry friends, including but not limited to dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, parrots etc.
With the unfailing support of our co-organizer – the Center of Buddhist Studies of The University of Hong Kong, the Foundation is delighted to announce that the second talk of 「廷驊法雨」講座系列 entitled 「不羈之後的海闊天空」. Renowned composer and singer, Mr. Lowell Lo (盧冠廷先生) and Ven. Chang Lin (常霖法師) will share their unique life stories and how they pursued their dreams indomitably on the evening of October 23, 2018 (Tuesday).
Mr. Gary Liu, Keynote Speaker, senior representatives from partner universities, Mentors, Trustees and the third cohort of The D. H. Chen Foundation Scholars
Mr. Gary Liu, CEO of The South China Morning Post as Keynote Speaker
Council Chairmen, VC/Presidents and senior representatives from partner universities, Mentors, Trustees and three cohorts of The D. H. Chen Foundation Scholars
The D. H. Chen Foundation Scholarship Welcomes Third Cohort
To celebrate the outstanding achievements of the new cohort of The D. H. Chen Foundation Scholars, the annual Scholarship Award Dinner was held on September 14, 2018 at the Aberdeen Marina Club. The event was attended by around 130 guests including the Council Chairmen, VC/Presidents and senior representatives of the Scholarship’s partner universities, Mentors, Trustees, Scholars and their families, and the Foundation’s NGO partners.
Mr. Alan Chow, Executive Director of the Foundation, welcomed attending guests with his Opening Remarks. He reflected on the first two years of the Scholarship Program and proudly shared the good work driven by our Scholars through meaningful collaborations with our NGO partners or their own initiatives. He welcomed the incoming cohort and urged them to make good use of the lifelong honor bestowed on them as The D. H. Chen Foundation Scholar to steer positive change in the community. After the Remarks, Ms. Vivien Chen Wai Wai, Chairman of the Foundation presented the well-earned recognitions to the 19 incoming Scholars of the 2018 Cohort.
In her Thank You Speech, Ms. Karen Cheung, Trustee of the Foundation, expressed her gratitude to the Board of Trustees and the Scholarship’s partner universities for their guidance and support. She shared that in the Scholarship interview, candidates were asked to pick a villain and live as him/her for a day. The question meant to inspire candidates to reflect on their own values and belief.
Mr. Gary Liu, CEO of The South China Morning Post gave his keynote speech entitled “A Story of Opportunities”. Mr. Liu told stories of grasping opportunities and missing out some others, and quoted Henry Dodd as his favorite saying on opportunities, “the reason most people do not recognize an opportunity when they meet it is because it usually goes around wearing overalls and looking like hard work”. He also shared three lessons he learnt from his own father Mr. Jack Liu and reminded the audience that everyone’s achievements were always established upon the work of someone who came before us and for that, we should be grateful.
The third cohort of Scholars expressed that they were all looking forward to starting their journey as The D. H. Chen Foundation Scholars bonding with their Mentors and widening their vision through the Foundation’s exclusive service and enrichment opportunities.
Awarding a maximum of 22 Scholarships every year, the Scholarship Program invests in Hong Kong’s brightest young people who will combine their professional knowledge and humanitarian ethos to drive impact for a better tomorrow. For more information about the Scholarship, please visit www.dchfsholarship.com.
Support Young Social Innovators at Youth ImpACT Award 2017-18 Final Ceremony
Presented by the Foundation together with The Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs Association of Hong Kong, Youth ImpACT Award (“YIAA”) will celebrate the innovative ideas and service achievements of 10 amazing teams of secondary school students at the Final Ceremony 2017-18 officiated by Dr. Choi Yuk Lin, JP, Under Secretary for Education, Education Bureau, Government of HKSAR. The 10 finalists were selected from more than 300 teams of students back in May 2018 and subsequently, spent their summer prototyping their pioneering service projects for disadvantaged children, senior citizens and people with disabilities. From using technology to solve daily commute problems of visually impaired people, researching on the benefits and drawbacks of Student Learning Profile, to engaging elderly people who used to be tailors to customize clothing for abandoned animals, the service projects all offered valuable learning opportunities to the finalists who will share how they have used their talents and skills to drive good.
Finalist Teams from the Second Cycle of the Youth ImpACT Award Announced
The Pitch Day of Youth ImpACT Award (“YIAA”) was held in May and a total of ten very innovative finalist projects were selected. The judging panels, comprising representatives from The D. H. Chen Foundation, The Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs Association of Hong Kong, SIE Fund, Hong Kong Council of Social Services and local NGOs were much impressed with the teams’ great enthusiasm and determination to solve community problems with their creative solutions. A big round of applause to all teams for the time and efforts they have put into their project ideas!
Over the summer, the ten finalist teams will proceed to the third phase and build service prototypes and test out the project ideas. You can find out more about the finalist projects here.
The Foundation would also like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who has voted for the 300+ creative service ideas submitted by over 1,100 secondary school students. Please stay tuned for news about the prototype process in the summer, more updates will be released here and also on the official website of YIAA.
AIESEC in Hong Kong Youth to Sustainability Summit 2018 Officially Opens
The Foundation is delighted to be the Core Partner of AIESEC in Hong Kong’s Youth to Sustainability Summit for the second consecutive year, supporting local young people to generate creative and sustainable solutions for Hong Kong through a unique youth-driven platform. Gathering over 300 secondary and university students from Hong Kong and other parts of the world, the Summit kicked off on June 10, 2018 at Hong Kong Cyberport.
Marking the official opening of the Summit, three panelists including Prof. Alfred Chan, Chairperson of Equal Opportunities Commission, Dr. K. F. Tsang, Chairman of IoT Committee, Smart City Consortium and Ms. Ada Wong, Chairperson of Make A Difference Institute shared their thoughts on motivating more youth to take responsibility for the future of Hong Kong and to dream big to steer the positive changes they want to see. Their discussion touched on a wide range of topics from cultural diversity and Chung King Mansion, to Hong Kong’s smart lampposts and the wonder kid Boyan Slat who in his 20s was already determined to rid the world’s oceans of plastic bottles. It was hugely encouraging to see the energy and enthusiasm displayed by the youth through their many questions to the panel in the Q&A session.
Focusing on three Sustainable Development Goals advocated by the United Nations, this year’s Summit had offered some of the most committed Hong Kong young people an intensive and stimulating four-day experience, as well as a valuable opportunity to build a sustainable Hong Kong through innovation and collaboration. For more details of the Summit, please visit https://www.facebook.com/YouthSummitHK/.
「廷驊法雨」講座系列 : 人生的考卷 – 心寄何處was successfully held on March 23, 2018 at Wang Gungwu Lecture Hall of The University of Hong Kong (“HKU”). A new initiative driven by the Foundation curating fresh dialogues between people from different backgrounds, we aim to bring positive energy in the community by promoting values like interconnectedness, compassion and empathy. The first session was a heart-to-heart dialogue between Mr. Wong Cho Lam and 果毅法師 who forged their friendship more than 20 years ago and facilitated by Dr. Venus Wong.
With the support of our co-organizer – HKU Centre of Buddhist Studies, more than 300 university students, academics, NGO representatives, friends from the community gathered to hear the personal stories of the two secondary school mates. Cho Lam and 果毅法師 went on to make very different life and career choices. One developed a passion and career in the performance industry and found spiritual solace in Christianity, and the other found wisdom and compassion in the Dharma and became a Buddhist monk.
Now in their late 30s, Cho Lam and 果毅法師 looked back on the challenges they faced with a light and grateful heart. Cho Lam had always been a resilient and adaptable individual who made the best out of whatever cards life dealt him. Despite the situation he was in, he made sure to turn up as the professional actor to bring joy to his audience. 果毅法師 found his conviction early on but faced strong opposition from his parents. During the 19 years he spent to seek acceptance from his family, he made good use of the time to prepare and equip himself to become a Buddhist monk. The tenacity and proactiveness displayed by Cho Lam and 果毅法師 were much inspiring and moving. They also gave credit to their family and friends who lent wonderful support and their faith for the immense strength and peace.
The dialogue demonstrated the wonderful and peaceful coexistence of people from different backgrounds, beliefs and dedication. Like Cho Lam said, in life, we will be faced with different “exams” along the way. Ultimately, it is one’s positive frame of mind together with the company of supportive people, that keeps us on track on our journey ahead.
Officiating guest, principals and teachers of participating kindergartens
The kick-off ceremony featured an interactive puppet theatre performance
The audience enjoyed themselves in the role playing game
Playful Learning Program Officially Launched!
The kick-off ceremony of Playful Learning Program was successfully held on Jan 20, 2018 at the Hong Kong Repertory Black Box Theatre. Opening with an interactive puppet theatre performance showcasing the creative use of drama in cultivating young children’s imagination, expressiveness and empathy, the ceremony was officiated by Mr. Jack CHAN (Undersecretary for Home Affairs), Mr. CHEUNG Wai Hing (Foundation Trustee), Mr. SIU Chor Kee (Vice-chairman, Hong Kong Repertory Theatre) and Professor Kevin CHUNG (Head of Early Childhood Department, The Education University of Hong Kong). Highly appreciating the vision and mission of the Program, principals from the participating kindergartens shared with the audience at the ceremony how the training workshops had equipped pre-primary teachers the respective drama education skills and techniques to enrich the curriculum and arouse students’ learning interest. To enable more stakeholders including teachers and parents to acknowledge the values of drama education towards a young child’s whole person development, the Program had also launched an official website to disseminate result findings and share best practices.