Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong


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YMCA 2019 March Perspective


Cover Story

Cover Story
Unplug to Reconnect
An old Chinese proverb tells us that “A family in harmony will prosper in everything”. It is a well-known fact that communication, care, respect and understanding are the essential building blocks of family harmony. However, in today’s smartphone era, mobile devices are ever-present – during mealtimes, family gatherings and other social occasions. With family members constantly on their devices, precious family interaction time can be impacted and sometimes even ruined completely.

Unplug to ReconnectBuilding a harmonious family is something that requires time and effort, treating others as we want to be treated, and taking the initiative to care for the people around us. If we do not invest the time to build and maintain family harmony, the entire family unit can be placed in jeopardy. Of course, every member of every family has a different personality and different emotions, habits and preferences. To maintain healthy, happy family relationships, communication is crucial – especially when the family is living under the same roof.

Years of clinical experience in family therapy has given Virginia Satir, a renowned family therapist from the United States, a wealth of experience in the subtle phenomena associated with family communication. Often, when family members are under stress, communication can become dysfunctional and distorted. Without clearly expressing their needs and emotions or holding important heart-to-heart conversations, misunderstanding and disappointment can be the result.

Ms Phoebe See, Coordinating Secretary of Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong’s Family Socialwork Working Group tells us that, “Communication is the most direct and effective way to express your love to your family. Making gestures and eye contact during interactions eliminates misunderstandings and also helps us to express our emotions in a genuine way. Sadly, people nowadays tend to communicate digitally, with interactions often limited to short texts or messages.”

Ms See continues, “Thinking about situations from the perspective of other people, and paying close attention to other's expectations and needs are two important keys to family harmony. We should avoid looking at a situation from a subjective position only – this is actually the biggest obstacle to effective communication.” Ms See gives us an example of a boy actively avoided to see his mother, as he believed that if she caught him playing video games, he would get in trouble and be scolded. Thus, whenever his mother returned home from work, he would hide in his room and avoid her. At the same time, the mother held a strong belief that video games were preventing her son from completing his homework and doing well at school.

This story, which may be familiar to readers, has two perspectives: clearly the mother is concerned about the academic progress of her son; but at the same time, her son may be choosing to play video games as a way of managing his stress. Ms See says that “Direct expression is one of the most effective communication methods. Family members should directly express their expectations and feelings to each other and avoid making subjective judgments to reduce misunderstandings.”

In addition to cutting down on communicating only by mobile device, families can also deepen their mutual understanding by participating in various activities together – this increases face-to-face communication and helps them develop and share common interests. This April and May, we shall be hosting two events: “Sunlight Unplug Day” and the “Parent-Child Free Fun Day 2019”. The focus of both these events will be the importance of nurturing and maintaining family relationships through communication.

Join us and take part in these events that are designed to bring families closer together – something that is more important than ever!
Sunlight Unplug Day
「Sunlight Unplug Day」This two-day event features a lecture and a “five-sense experiential workshop”, both of which will help families experience and understand various parent-child communication methods. A key component of the event will be reflecting on the benefits of “life without smartphones” and putting various strategies alternative communication strategies in practice. Families of between two and four people with children aged 6 to 14 years old are welcome to join.

Day 1: Sunlight Unplug Camp
Date: 13 April 2019 (Saturday)
Time: 12:45 pm to 5:15 pm
Venue: Jordan Centre (Room 101, 1/F, 1 Austin Road West, Tsim Sha Tsui)

Day 2: Sunlight Unplug Day Launch Ceremony and Afternoon Tea Gathering
Date: 19 May 2019 (Sunday)
Time: 2 pm to 5 pm
Venue: MCP1 Metro City Plaza Phase I (Po Lam MTR Station)

The fee for both event days is HK$50 per family member. Click here for event details and registration.


Parent-child Free Fun Day 2019
Parent-child Free Fun Day 2019Our annual Parent-child Free Fun Day will be held this year in mid-April, providing a wide variety of fun and healthy activities that children and their parents can engage in together. Passive and active recreational activities held at our Wu Kwai Sha campsite will deepen bonds between parents and children, while Alman Chan, the Principal of Christian Zheng Sheng College, will speak on the topic of “Emotional Hardships” and share tips for adults and children on how to better manage emotions.

Date: 14 April 2019 (Sunday)
Time: 2 pm to 5:30 pm
Venue: 2 On Chun Street, Ma On Shan, Wu Kwai Sha Youth Village

Click here for more event details.



What’s New
Mapperthon Community Action Project
Mapperthon Community Action Project Exercise is fun, but have you ever tried street running, street dancing or street fitness workouts? Now is your chance! Jointly organised by Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Jockey Club, the Jockey Club Mapperthon Community Action Project is hosting a sports market at Hollywood Plaza in Diamond Hill at the end of this month.

This one-day event will feature free, publically-accessible sports booths, VR running games, street dance and street fitness performances. Participants can also convert the calories they have burned into a variety of gifts! Admission is free and all are welcome.

Date: 31 March 2019 (Sunday)
Time: 1 pm to 6 pm
Venue: 1/F, Hollywood Plaza, Diamond Hill
Content: Sports booths, VR running game, virtual road bike, Taspony and street fitness performances and more.
For enquiries : 2341 5033


Last call for “Cycling for Love 2019”
This year’s “Cycling for Love” campaign will take place between 17 and 23 April and bring cyclists on a ride around the incredible Qiandao Lake. In support of our long-running “Coach Kindle Hopes’ Mobile Classroom” Project, participants will also visit “Yi” villagers, install water cellars for schools in mountainous areas, visit “left-behind” children and help to plant camellia tree seedlings on 22 April – Earth Day. If you want to have an especially meaningful Easter this year, then don’t miss this opportunity and join us! Places are limited and all participants will need to register in advance.

To learn more about this important event, please click here.


Unleashing Creativity For Social Good – the International Youth Conference on Social Innovation
Unleashing Creativity For Social Good – the International Youth Conference on Social Innovation The International Youth Conference on Social Innovation will be held in July this year. This important conference is being jointly organised by the University and College YMCA Department of Chinese YMCA of Hong Kong and Hong Kong Baptist University’s Office of Student Affairs, with funding support from the Home Affairs Bureau’s Youth Development Commission.

The conference will see over 150 young people from around the world gather in Hong Kong to develop innovative ideas which create social good in some form. Through thematic seminars, design workshops, community exposure and cultural tours, as well as a local and overseas social innovation project fair, it is hoped that these energetic young people will gain inspiration from their interactions with industry professionals and from hearing about good practices and the experiences of people working on existing social innovation projects. The ultimate aim of the conference is to make the world a better place by generating creative ideas to fill in the gaps in existing social services in Hong Kong, the home countries of the participants and the entire global village.

Date: 19-22 July 2019
Venue: Hong Kong Baptist University & The Cityview
Accommodation: Undergraduate Halls, HKBU
Fee: HKD$750 (including all programmes, meals, local accommodation and transportation)

Members aged 16 – 29 are welcome to join us on this conference. For details, please click here.


Activities Highlights
Walking Football Fun Day
Walking Football Fun Day The AXA Hong Kong–YMCA Walking Football Fun Day 2019 was held last month and was a big win with everyone who attended. Two Liverpool FC legends, Bruce Grobbelaar and Patrik Berger, along with retired football player Leslie George Santos and actor Edwin Siu Ching Nam, played a friendly walking football match to demonstrate their skills in this new sport.

Even the rain didn’t dampen the participants’ enthusiasm on the day – in addition to taking pictures with the two Liverpool FC legends, members of the public enjoyed themselves with a first-hand glimpse of the pleasure and fun of walking football at games booths and by watching live demonstrations of the sport.


Join the YM Volunteer Academy and improve your speaking skills!
The YM Volunteer Academy offers public speaking workshops for our young members. After six training sessions, the participants who were chosen for the workshops saw their speaking abilities improve dramatically. The workshops also helped the participants develop and express their personal styles.

If you want to take part in upcoming volunteer training workshops offered by the YM Volunteer Academy, you can! All you need to do is become a YMCA volunteer, perform well and you may be recommended for the programme.

Click here to register as a volunteer now!


Discover YMCA YouTube Channel
The “Realise Love, Realise Dreams” 2019 Launch Ceremony
The “Realise Love, Realise Dreams” 2019 Launch Ceremony video


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