Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong

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Members’ Sharing

With a current membership of almost 90,000, Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong is one of the largest social services organisations in the city. Over the years, the Association has gained a great deal of support from across society, although different people appreciate the YMCA for different reasons. Let’s hear one set of opinions about the Association from "The Coolest Family". Last year, this family won a competition to become Family Member Ambassadors for the YMCA and, as winners, they were able to enjoy a huge variety of services and experiences. They were kind enough to share those experiences with us. Also, we have invited some significant members, sharing how YMCA affected them. Does this sound familiar to you?

 

Coolest Family
Taichung experience trip
"As the YMCA’s ‘Coolest Family’, my family of four visited Taichung for an amazing four-day, three-night experience trip. Usually when you travel, it’s all about shopping, dining and sightseeing; but our trip was full of fun and meaningful experiences. Our trip may have been short, but we were able to visit and enjoy the Nantou YMCA’s different service centres. We discovered more about their local programmes for the elderly, the mentally handicapped, women and toddlers, and learned about their education programmes. Taking part in the Nantou YMCA’s elderly and disabled volunteer services meant a great deal to us. For example, to us, making rice balls is a pretty easy task, but for elderly people, this is not an easy task at all! We needed to be patient and show them how to do it. Most of the elderly people at the activity spoke a Taiwanese dialect, meaning they didn’t really understand what we said. However, our smiles and the way we showed them how we cared about the elderly allowed them to feel our love. We also learned a lot during the disabled volunteer activity. Everyone got excited when we made a three-dimensional Christmas tree together. This made us realise how simple blessings in this world can be: we must treasure the fortune that is an ordinary life. As "The Coolest Family", we were very privileged; we were able to see that the YMCA is a truly global social service organisation by participating in services at the Nantou YMCA and Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong. Although both organisations serve different targets in different areas, we saw how both associations serve the underprivileged in their respective communities with a humble heart.
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Camp experience
Another activity we got to experience as the YMCA’s "Coolest Family" was a two-day, one-night camp at Wu Kwai Sha Youth Village, one of the largest campsites in Asia. The campsite provides an indoor and outdoor activities area offering an amazing diversity of activities, including a ropes course, archery range, grassy soccer field, basketball court, badminton court, mini-soccer field, children’s playground, swimming pool, barbeque area, recreation room, electronic games centre and more! The four of us took part in many recreational activities during our time at the camp, including playing ping pong, archery, taking a ropes course and others. Under the guidance of an instructor, we learned how to pitch a tent, set up a campfire and even cook outdoors in a grassy area! We are now planning to get together with our friends to use the different facilities at the Association’s other two campsites: the Lions-YMCA Junk Bay Youth Camp and Y's Men-YMCA Wong Yi Chau Youth Camp.
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"The Coolest Family" Hotel food and beverage experience
One night, the four of us visited the award-winning restaurant at the Association’s Cityview hotel to enjoy the highly-popular seafood buffet. After dinner, we were all in agreement about how good the food was. The buffet offered a great variety of choices, and satisfied our different appetites. The types of food offered included unlimited live oysters (shipped by air), King crab legs, Japanese sashimi, hot dishes, all kinds of desserts and even Mövenpick ice cream! We literally could not stop eating this mouth-watering food. The fresh seafood, lobsters and delicate desserts were our favourites. What a treat! Free and unlimited refills of red wine, white wine, beer and juices were also on offer. Apart from the Cityview hotel on Waterloo road, the Harbourview hotel, located in Wan Chai, is also operated by the YMCA. We will definitely be going back to a YMCA hotel to experience their high-quality food and beverage service very soon!
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Volunteer experience
The core aim of taking part in the YMCA’s "The Coolest Family" competition was to serve the community together as a family. We recently visited the Association’s Shek Kip Mei Centre, one of the YMCA’s children and youth integrated service centres, to act as volunteers. At the centre, we played games, guessed riddles and chatted with a group of children. We enjoyed the day very much, as we got to meet people of different ages and people from different areas of society during our service. As parents, we rediscovered how important it is to spend time interacting with our children and talking about our feelings – this is what helps to build a good parent-child relationship.
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I am the member of YMCA
Mr. Yeung Kwong and Mrs. Wong Shuk-han (Tin Ping Neighbourhood Elderly Centre)
Mr. and Mrs. Yeung, both of them aged 90, are veteran members of the Association. They have been supporting the YMCA since the start of Neighbourhood Elderly Centre.
Active years:
24 years
The most favourite activity:
The elderly Karaoke
Why chose YMCA??
My wife and I started looking for an elder centre nearby which suitable for us and fill up our lives. Since then, we joined YMCA activities.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
The YMCA seems like a big family. The staff of the center cares about how every single member was doing. All of us seem like friends who have been known for each other for ages. My wife and I visit the center triple times a week. We take part in a range of activities, including singing, sports. We enjoy the activities very much.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
The centre has arranged a Chinese traditional wedding for some elders including my wife and I, bringing us the sweet memory when we were young.
Members - Mr. Yeung Kwong and Mrs. Wong Shuk-han
Rachel (University YMCA (Hong Kong Baptist University))
Rachel, the winner of “Be a Global Citizen” Campaign, visited Maldives as a “Global Citizen Ambassador“ for ecological investigation.
Active years:
3 years
The most favourite activity:
“Be a Global Citizen” Campaign
Why chose YMCA??
I was a YMCA member because YMCA offers a variety of exchange tour to other counties and diversified activities, making my three-year university life meaningful and fulfilling.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
I worked as an Uni-Y committee after being a member. There was a chance for me to visit India for study, earning the experience of organising an activity and broadening my horizon.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
I am so pleased to have a chance to join a sizable programme like“Be a Global Citizen” Campaign, winning the grant and making my dream come true.
Member - Rachael
Mrs. Lau and her family (Kornhill Centre)
Mrs. Lau, her husband and their three children are some of the family members who are actively participated in the centre activities.
Active years:
6 years
The most favourite activity:
Cooking class and Magic Class for kids
Why chose YMCA??
The variety and age range of YMCA activities are vast. Classes include learning, gaming, tours, behavior tutorial and more. The fees are reasonable too.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
The centre arranged parent and child activities in great details. Even busy father can be able to spend time to join the courses, strengthening parent-child relationship.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
My daughter was a shy girl. After joining YMCA activities, she built a lot of confidence. She even performed magic in front of us after a magic class. We were so excited for her transformation.
Member - Mrs. Lau and family
Mr. Ho Shiu-Kuen
As the Association’s Life member, Mr. Ho participated the Association’s activities when he was young. Gradually he became one of the committees in the Association. He even participated in volunteer services after he retired.
Active years:
over 50 years
The most favourite activity:
Ride a bike for the children in China Marathon
Why chose YMCA??
The YMCA has a positive image. I joined summer programmes when I was young. When I grew up, I wanted to contribute to the YMCA. That’s why I become a Life member as a way of support.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
YMCA is the miniature of a society. Through the communication between people, it can provide more learning opportunities.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
Back to 70’s, he visited the United States as a volunteer to participate in the World Youth Council.
Member - Ho Shiu Kuen
Mrs. Tsang
Mrs. Tsang now resides in the United Kingdom. She is a volunteer there. Each time she comes back Hong Kong, she will spare time to join the YMCA volunteer activities.
Active years:
8 months
The most favourite activity:
“Kindle Hopes – Loving Parents” Project
Why chose YMCA??
My husband is a YMCA member too. He received a leaflet about a volunteer activity and my whole family applied to help.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
Taking part in a volunteer activity not only help the people in need, but also help me to meet a group of true friends.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
After the encouragement of volunteering friends, I started to go to the church and started my journey of faith.
Member - Mrs. Tsang
Law C
When I was young, I followed my mother to the YMCA, became a volunteer and joined girl guard brownie section. Now I am the staff of YMCA. When I have day-offs, I volunteer to become the leader of girl guard brownie section.
Active years:
20 years
The most favourite activity:
“Programme Volunteers Awards”
Why chose YMCA??
Under my mother’s guidance, I was a volunteer. After I grew up, I wanted to contribute to the society, so I joined the YMCA as a staff.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
The YMCA allows me to unleash my volunteerism and serve the community.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
It is rewarding to see my help affects people’s life. I don’t worry about how hard the work is.
Member - Man
Ms. Leung (Tsuen Wan Centre)
Ms. Leung joined the YMCA for just a short time, but she is actively participating the YMCA recreation and sports activities, such as Yoga classes and swimming classes.
Active years:
1 year
The most favourite activity:
Swimming Class
Why chose YMCA??
My son has made a big improvement after taking the YMCA swimming class. I gained confidence on the coach, became a member and apply for a swimming class too.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
I am not confidence in water before I learn how to swim. Finally I learnt the skills and this is not something I have ever thought about. The more I exercise, the happier I felt.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
Swimming becomes a part of my life. Now I even take the initiative to ask my family out for swimming!!
Member - Ms Leung
Man (Shatin Youth Outreaching Social Work Team)
Man quit his school when he was in secondary school three. Under the influences of some bad friends, he broke the law. Then he was sent to a detention center. Afterwards, he worked with his father in transportation industry.
Active years:
3 years
The most favourite activity:
Star of Better Life Option
Why chose YMCA??
With a friend’s referral, Man met the YMCA social worker and participated in volunteer activities.
What did you get after being YMCA Members??
Now he took part in different healthy programme and met a lot of new friends.
What was the happiness memory at the YMCA??
Earlier, he visited Myanmar for volunteer services through YMCA. He helped the local poverty people to fix their roofs. He also sponsored a local girl, hoping to use his little power to help the others.
Member - Man