In-depth discussion of HKSAR’s 2021-2022 budget

As part of our Club’s effort to serve and promote our members’ vocations, our Club and Rotary Club of Kingspark Hong Kong jointly sponsored and recorded a series of detailed interviews discussing the upcoming budget. The series, divided into segments of “income”, “expense”, “pandemic”, and “future”, features members of both Clubs: Rotarian James Sung from Kingspark, also founding Director of Hong Kong Progress and Perfection Research Institute, as policy commentator and interviewer; and Past President Webster, also current President of The Taxation Institute of Hong Kong, as topical expert. The segments are released on either side of Financial Secretary’s unveiling of his budget. Part 1: income Part 2: expense Part 3: pandemic Part 4: future

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Living Water Townhall

On February 22, our service partner Amity Foundation hosted a townhall featuring representatives from two NGOs in Nepal and Myanmar, school students in Hong Kong, and donors. Our Club also joined to learn about water resource scarcity in poor rural areas in Nepal and Myanmar. President Mark, President Elect Sam, Rotarians Jason and Eliza joined as a group. Past President Lily joined remotely. Rotaractors Gabin Kee and Anuj Bhatia also joined remotely as guests. The townhall featured sharing by villagers who benefited from water infrastructure and systems funded partially by our Club’s fundraising efforts last year during Walk for Living Water 2020. In many parts of the world, villagers still have to walk for hours to reach water resources and bring back water for their daily use. A lot of these resources, heavily polluted and infested with bacteria, are marginally suitable for bathing, let alone drinking and cooking. Our Club will continue to work with Amity to raise awareness of global potable water shortage, inform our youth about the importance of water preservation, and support projects that bring clean water to communities around the world.

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Club meeting — sharing by two Rotary Club Presidents

On February 11, our Club continued our regular meeting on Zoom due to the ongoing pandemic and government gathering restrictions. President Bennett Chen from Rotary E-Club of Lantau and President Candy Cheung from Rotary Club of Neoteric Hong Kong joined as speakers. President Bennett was accompanied by his members: Assistant Governor Anna Or, Past Presidents Patric Lee and Andrew Wong, and Rotarian Kermit Lee. President Candy was accompanied by her members: Past Presidents Helen Or and Alice Tsang, Immediate Past President Edmond Wong, and President Elect Sean Kwan. As evidenced by their large entourages, our Club is grateful that the two Presidents are well supported by their respective Clubs. The meeting began with our customary Rotary song and usual Club and District reports. President Elect Sam also summarized an earlier meeting with Scouts. Thereafter, the (virtual) floor was yielded to Presidents Bennett and Candy, who gave summaries of their current and upcoming projects. Highlights by President Bennett included his Club’s build-up of an enviable, District-leading nine-Club Interact network, their multi-year scholarship program for youth, and their current fundraising activity, titled “500 for 500”. The idea is to challenge participants to do 500 iterations of something, be it pushups, sit-ups, kilometers(!)…

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Hot meal distribution at Holy Cafe

On February 6, President Mark and Past President Grace finally caught a break from zoom fatigue to volunteer their time at Holy Cafe to distribute hot meals to the elderly in Cheung Sha Wan/Lai Chi Kok area. Some edible items were donated by President Mark’s friends who volunteered with our Club at Holy Cafe. Our next outing is tentatively scheduled on February 20. Rotaractors may join.

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Club meeting — Governor Elect Keith Chow

On January 28, our Club continued our regular meeting on Zoom due to the ongoing pandemic and government gathering restrictions. Governor Elect Keith was our speaker. Coco joined as guest. The meeting began with a slew of updates of Club and District activities. Past President Webster gave a quick introduction of our vocational service project with Rotary Club of Kingspark Hong Kong. Past President Grace summarized our service outing at Holy Cafe on January 23. Governor Elect Keith then shared with us his Rotary journey, which began in the late 2000s. A few years later, he said he hit the jackpot as he was elected President at his home Club, Rotary Club of Admiralty, during Past District Governor Belinda’s year of district governorship in Rotary Year 2014-15. Throughout his Rotary life, he has served our District in many capacities. He often brings his family with him, especially during community service. Governor Elect Keith has a clearly-defined and robust vision for his upcoming governorship. One of his priorities is to develop a stronger working relationship between Rotary and Rotaract, the status and prestige of the latter to be upgraded significantly in 2022. In short, starting on July 1, 2022, Rotaract will…

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Visit to an elderly centre with our Rotaractors

On January 16, President Mark, Past President Webster and Rotarian Jason joined Crystal Lee and Rotaractor Charis to deliver 70 handwritten letters and supermarket coupons to elderly at Hing Tin Wendell Memorial Church Alison Lam Elderly Centre. The project was conceived by our Rotaractors at Lap Chee College, who wanted to connect with neglected groups in our community while with pandemic precautions and social distancing in mind. They originally thought about hosting virtual parties for the elderly, but due to technical difficulties and the limited scope of interaction, they turned to a more personal form of communication – letter writing. 70 letters were hand-written – a feat all the more impressive since many Rotaractors are foreign students who don’t speak or write in Chinese. They had to rely on other Rotaractors who acted as translators and ghostwriters to get the job done. Most of these letters included well-wishes, while some others included long proses, including appealing to the elderly to keep warm during the winter and reassuring the elderly to stay upbeat and positive during this pandemic. Each letter was accompanied by 200 HKD-worth of supermarket coupons, generously donated by Charter President Patrick. The Centre’s representative thanked the Rotaract representative…

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Club meeting — Self Media, Rett Syndrome and more

On January 14, our Club conducted our regular meeting on Zoom due to the ongoing pandemic and government gathering restrictions. Crystal Lee, Tutor and Rotaract Advisor at Rotaract Club of HKU Lap Chee College International joined us as guest. President Mark began the meeting by wishing everyone a safe and healthy new year. Thereafter, he reported the status of this year’s District Conference (May 22-23 at Regal Airport Hotel; current under planning), and Rotary Ultramarathon (March 21; in virtual form). Registration is open for both events. Please contact Past President Lily for details regarding Conference, and Past President Webster regarding joining the virtual ultramarathon, at which our Club plans to sponsor one team. Rotarian Jason gave reports of deliveries of 100 care packages to ethnic minority families and the upcoming project with Lap Chee Rotaractors. Past President Dora also gave updates of Nicole Au Yung, our Rotary Scholar, who is studying for her PhD at the University of Oxford and was recently mentioned in a widely-cited article in the Washington Post. Our feature speaker required very little introduction. May Chang, a former Harbour Rotarian, joined our meeting to talk about self media (自媒體) and a project that she is involved…

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Delivery of care packages to ethnic minority refugee families

During the first week of January, 100 care packages were delivered to refugee families via Society of St. Vincent de Paul. The care packages included canned food, cereals and noodles, and packaged beverages. Care packages for Muslim families were repackaged such that all products with pork were swapped with other suitable items. The 100 care packages were generously donated by a restaurant in Tai Wai and referred to us by Past President Samuel. Our Club helped to liaise with Society of St. Vincent de Paul, who then arranged the deliveries to dozens of refugee families. We thank Past President Samuel for introducing us to the donor, to Rotarian Jason and Past President Angela for helping to liaise with Society of St. Vincent de Paul, and to Society of St. Vincent de Paul for helping to arrange deliveries to the refugee families in need.

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