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YMCA 2018 July Perspective

27-07-2018

Cover story

Cover story
Global Warming Affects Everyone
These days, our lives keep us so busy that we often have no time to think about issues of global importance. Yet these global problems affect all of us, especially climate change. Hong Kong’s unusually hot weather this year is a prime example – as none of us, young or old, are able to escape the heat outside. To help young people develop a global perspective on big issues like climate change, and to promote the idea of global citizenship, for the past eight years, Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong has organized our “Be a Global Citizen Campaign”.

Global Warming Affects EveryoneThis year’s campaign attracted 214 participants who competed for gold, silver and bronze awards. At the campaign’s award presentation ceremony which was held recently, special guests included the Chairman of our Global Citizenship Steering Committee Mr Tsang Wai-hung, JP, GBS, PDSM, PMSM; and Mr Yau Chung Wan, Vice President of Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong.

This year’s ceremony took place at the Wu Kwai Sha Youth Village, with the participants encouraged to take part in a “Mock Paris Climate Conference” and improve their environmental awareness in various ways. Lam Chiu-ying, SBS, the chairman of Environmental Campaign Committee,and former director of the Hong Kong Observatory, gave a fascinating and important talk on global warming and also shared some eco-friendly tips during a session called “How Hong Kong People Cope With Climate Change”.

During the session, Mr Lam explained that although Hong Kong’s population is just over seven million, our consumption levels are astonishingly high, saying that “Hong Kongers are actually too fond of shopping. Our over-consumption is leading to record-setting levels of waste, meaning that people living in developing countries may suffer even more [from the effects of climate change].” He went on to urge the young people of Hong Kong to purchase items only when necessary and break their habit of shopping “just for fun”, which will eventually help reduce Hong Kong’s burden on the environment.

In addition to reducing waste, Mr Lam noted that while most people are able to enjoy air conditioning in their homes during the summertime, those living in cubicle-style apartments have no choice to suffer from the heat, making their lives even harder. Lam encouraged participants to adopt a greener lifestyle, reduce their use of air conditioners, and instead choose to use USB fans to reduce their consumption of electricity.

To motivate the winners of the gold awards to take part in the “Be a Global Citizen: Ultimate Tour”, which six guests with experience of volunteering overseas and special travelling were also invited to speak, including Angel Cheng, who took part in a volunteer building project in Myanmar; Lo Ho Tat, a cycling enthusiast who biked from Hong Kong to Europe; three global backpacking enthusiasts – Lee Man Chun, BallBall and Mandy Lee; and So Han Fan, founder of GreenPrice, a retailer concerned about environmental issues and food poverty.

In addition to sharing the goals of their lives and the reasons why they have chosen to be a volunteer or explore the world, the guest speakers also encouraged the gold award winners to develop their global perspective and become genuine global citizens.

For more information about our Be a Global Citizen campaign, please click here.

 

What’sNew?
YMCA World ChallengeThis year’s YMCA World Challenge has set “running” as its main theme. To bring this theme to life, Mr Karl Lau, the General Secretary of Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong, took part in the filming of a video explaining the concept of sustainable development and demonstrating how we can integrate sustainability into our daily lives. The video was a hit, winning the “Best Video Award” at the YMCA World Council held in Chiang Mai, Thailand this year. The video explained how running is not only an eco-friendly sport, it also promotes a sense of vitality, encouraging members to take care of themselves so that they can better take care of their families.

 

 

Activities Highlights
Bridges Street Centre Guided Tour
Bridges Street Centre Guided Tour To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the establishment of our Bridges Street Centre, Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong and the Development Bureau’s Commissioner for Heritage’s Office jointly organized a “Heritage Fiesta”. The purpose of the fiesta was to educate the public about the history of Hong Kong and the development of the Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong. As part of the festival, eight tours for Bridges Street Centre were organised, receiving an overwhelming response from the public. On one of the tours, held on 2 June, the participants got to step on the first elevated wok-shaped running track in Hong Kong, with a guide helping them to gain a better understanding of our services. As a result of the overwhelming demand, a second round of guided Heritage Fiesta tours will be held in September and October 2018; stay tuned for more details which will be posted on our website and Facebook page.

 

Hang Seng “Unlimited Love Visit Day”
Hang Seng “Unlimited Love Visit Day” Hang Seng Bank, one of our Y-Care Corporate Partners, recently sent some corporate volunteers to our Shek Kip Mei Centre to work with ethnic minority children, new immigrants and low-income family members from the community. In addition to helping the children learn about gift wrapping, the volunteers also visited and spent time with elderly people living alone or in small households. The event not only helped the participating children better understand the wider community, it also enhance their sense of belonging.

 

Global YMCA Updates
Be the Change, Inspire the Action:
the 19th YMCA World Council in Chiang Mai

 

Global YMCA Updates Taking an active role in the World YMCA movement, Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong and the World Alliance of YMCAs (WAY) have spared no effort to help empower young people. Every four years, the WAY organizes the World Council meeting to discuss the World YMCA movement’s key strategies and to elect new officers and a new Executive Committee.

With an overarching theme of “Youth Empowerment 4 Good”, the 19th YMCA World Council was just held in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Running from 8-14 July, over a thousand delegates from around the world took part, including our board members, change agents, youth leaders from our University & College YMCA, Young Members’ Council and Chinese YMCA College; as well as many staff from our Association. Through a series of keynote speeches and groupwork sessions, the participants exchanged views on various topics and learned new strategies by interacting with delegates from other YMCAs. Our youth leaders also gained invaluable new experience and expanded their networks through their many interactions with other participants.

Apart from the dynamic discussion and learning sessions mentioned, a new Executive Committee was also formed, which will serve from 2018 to 2022. Our Honourable Treasurer Mr Ronald Yam Tak-fai was elected as the WAY’s new Treasurer, while the WAY also elected its first female President, Ms Patricia Pelton from Canada, and its the first African Secretary-General, Mr Carlos Sanvee from Togo.

We look forward to continuing to promote youth empowerment by nurturing more young leaders with a global outlook. We have no doubt that these young people will help create positive change in society and create a better world for all of us.

 

Discover YMCA Channel
YMCA World Challenge 2018
YMCA World Challenge 2018 video

 


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