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Let’s Bring Hope

Featured on the Hong Kong Economic Journal (October 4, 2018)


Last week, we had the honour of hosting Character Day in Hong Kong for the third year in a row as a citywide event. We hosted the event at Telford Plaza and had the privilege of having the Secretary of Education, the Permanent Secretary of Home Affairs, the Executive Director of Charities and Community of the Hong Kong Jockey Club, school principals, representatives from charities and members of the press with us. It was a very emotional moment for me as I spoke on stage and highlighted some things that we have accomplished in the last three years.


Since bringing this global movement to Hong Kong in 2016, we have seen over 230,000 people participate in Character Day. This year was particularly exciting because our event was featured on the global platform of Let It Ripple, the founder and organizer of the global Character Day. They had seen our momentum and progress over the last three years and this year, they put a spotlight on our city and I was so thrilled that our tiny little city has been internationally recognized because of how we are standing together and highlighting the importance of character and character education.


Every year we choose a character theme to focus on and we started with gratitude and kindness the first two years. This year, we highlighted the theme of hope as we want to see each Hong Kong person carry hope for their own lives and to then bring hope to others. Hope can seem like an abstract concept but social scientists have defined it as having a goal along with perseverance and tenacity to see the goal realized.


Character Day Hong Kong started as a hope. We had a hope that our city would come together in unity to celebrate the importance of character. We had a hope that character education would be put in the spotlight so that education wouldn’t just be about grades and knowledge but about character and values. We had a hope that our city would become one of character - 品格傳城。We’ve come a long way but we still have a long way to go.


On our backdrop at 2018 Character Day Hong Kong, we created a skyline of Hong Kong and it was made of a collage of hundreds of‘ hope cards’. Over the past few months, we asked Hong Kong people to write down what hope means to them on the cards. And on the day, our officiating guests added to the skyline collage and the skyline lit up – representing how we can light up our city with hope. To share with you what some of our guests wrote:


Mr. Kevin Yeung, Secretary for Education, “Hope is the drive to keep us moving ahead.”


Mrs. Cherry Tse, Permanent Secretary for Education, “Hope is perseverance in face of adversities.”


Mr. Leong Cheung, Executive Director, Charities and Community, The Hong Kong Jockey Club, “Hope is having the courage to run!”


CDHK Ambassador – Ms. Shelley Lee, Community Godmother, “Hope is giving someone confidence to overcome all problems and face the future.”


CDHK Ambassador – Dr. Connie Wong, Three-fingered pianist, “Hope is a force that pushes us to move towards success.”


CDHK Ambassador – Mr. Ricky Yu, Founder and CEO of Light Be, “Hope is even when you feel hopeless, you still choose to believe and take actions.”


CDHK Ambassador – Mr. Arnold Chan, Founder and CEO of Teach For Hong Kong, “Hope is relentlessly believing in people and the world.”


And mine was:“Hope is believing in a better future and playing a part to make it happen.”


What is hope to you and how will your hope light up our city?


Visit our website (characterday.hk) and Facebook (品格教育協會 Character Education Foundation) to get the latest news on ‘Character Day Hong Kong’.


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攜手傳遞希望


上星期,我們有幸主持「香港品格日」,這項每年一度的全港盛事至今已踏入第三個年頭。今屆開幕禮假九龍灣德福廣場舉行,我們有幸邀請到教育局局長、民政事務局常任秘書長、香港賽馬會慈善及社區事務執行總監、各學校校長、慈善團體代表及傳媒朋友參與這場盛事。當天典禮上,我在台上分享過往三年的成果,這對我來說是一個激動人心的時刻。


從二零一六年起把這個全球性活動帶到香港,我們估計參與「香港品格日」的人數已超過二十三萬。今年品格日為標誌性的一年,因為全球品格日發起組織Let It Ripple看到我們三年來的發展,決定今年把焦點放在香港,首度邀請我們在其國際平台上轉播當天活動。我為此感到非常激動,這個小小的城市因為我們集結一起、重視品格及品格教育的重要性而獲得國際認可。


我們每年會選擇一種品格作為主題,而首兩年的主題分別為「感恩」及「善良」。今年,我們選擇以「希望」為主題,因為我們希望看到每個香港人為自己的生命帶來希望,再為他人帶來希望。「希望」聽起來是一個抽象的概念,事實卻不然,社會科學家把希望演繹為「堅持不懈、堅韌不拔地實現目標」。


「香港品格日」為希望的開始,我們希望我們的城市能夠團結一致,重視品格及品格教育,讓教育不僅是關於成績和知識,而是品格和價值觀,真正達致「品格傳城」。我們已經走了很長的路,但相信我們還有漫漫長路。


在開幕禮的背景板上,我們收集了超過幾百張希望訊息卡,並將這些希望訊息卡填滿板上的維港剪影。當天,一眾主禮嘉賓一同填滿預先預留的空格,並舉行亮燈儀式,隨著燈光一一亮起,寓意香港人可以透過傳遞希望以逐步點亮整個香港。一眾嘉賓如何定義希望呢?


教育局局長楊潤雄先生:「希望是推動我們前行的力量。」


民政事務局常任秘書長謝凌潔貞女士:「希望是無論順逆,堅持奮進。」


香港賽馬會慈善及社區事務執行總監張亮先生:「希望是敢就跑!」


品格日大使——眾人媽打李麗娟女士:「希望是給予他人跨過難關和面對未來的信心。」


品格日大使——三指鋼琴家黃愛恩博士:「希望是步向成功的一種前行動力。」


品格日大使——要有光創辦人及行政總裁余偉業先生:「希望是感到絕望時仍然選擇相信並行動。」


品格日大使——良師香港創辦人及行政總裁陳君洋先生:「希望是毫無保留地相信他人和這個世界。」


而我的則是:「希望是相信美好的將來,並用行動實踐出來。」


希望對你來說是什麼,而你的希望會如何燃亮我們的城市?


有關「香港品格日」的最新資訊,歡迎大家瀏覽官方網頁characterday.hk及Facebook專頁www.facebook.com/characterdayhk了解更多。


2018年10月4日(香港經濟日報)



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