Social Work Experience
Our trip was an exploration of neglected minorities in Hong Kong society, to see how people can struggle under the great pressure of an unequal society. Our team interviewed several groups of people such as the elderly and the homeless, which made me reflect on my own lifestyle. It is almost impossible to imagine such scenarios where people still have to fight for their own living. It is also important to think about Hong Kong’s current welfare system, which can create scarcity which some people cannot benefit from. We visited an NGO, FoodAngel and helped in the food production for these minorities. I greatly treasure this experience and it has made me reflect on what we can do to help others who are deprived. To conclude, I enjoyed this Challenge Week experience immensely and am looking forward to gaining more experience in serving society in other ways in the future.
Matthew Lee (12A)
Social Work Experience
Today, we distributed food to the elderly who live in Shek Kip Mei. The food includes vegetables that were given by shops in the wet market, bread that was given by the Peninsula Hotel, and drinks donated by a chain store. The main thing we distributed today is the lunch and dinner boxes from food angel.
The distribution method of vegetables is quite special; it is in the form of lucky draw, not first come first served. By using this method, the elderly have an equal chance of receiving the vegetables, and they do not need to wait for a long time before the vegetables are being distributed, whereas another method I mentioned requires the elderly to compete with each other to see who comes first.
Despite the fact that food donated could prevent hunger and malnutrition; the main purpose of distributing food to the elderly is to let them know there are still people in society who care about them, and that they have not been abandoned by society.
Today, we have done similar tasks to yesterday. One thing different is that we visited the elderly who live alone in a small apartment. By talking with them, we know that rents Hong Kong are very expensive, and it is hard for the people who have no income to live.
After we have collected vegetables from the shop in the wet market, the staff in the centre taught us to cook dishes using those vegetables, which tasted fantastic. I think all the shops in the wet market should donate vegetables that they don’t want to sell, rather than throwing it away.
Today, we have visited the old street and estate of Sham Shui Po. We have seen old buildings prepared to be rebuilt. Rebuilding and renewal of these old areas seems good; however this only benefits the owners of the flats in the area. One reason why those of low income groups choose to live in old areas of Sham Shui Po is because the rent and cost of living is relatively low. If they are now forced to move out, they live in other locations which are far so that the rent remains similar. Nevertheless transport would become the burden to them as they would need to pay a lot for transport.
We went to the food angel today, and completed some work there. I have found out that being a volunteer is tiring as the hand and the arm need to do repeat actions. However, when I think about the people that can be benefited by it, this tiring feeling really does not matter.
Last day of our Challenge Week and we carry out similar work. But tonight is different: we will cooperate with our CKY Year 10 students who are joining the community service of MECS, with us being their mentor in the program. At that night, we had over 40 volunteer workers from CKY all together. What a memorable night!
Candice Kwok (12B)