Pacific International Wilderness Experience 2005 is coming
programme receives generous sponsorship from Cathay
Pacific Airways and has been a great success in
past years so the Federation, again in partnership with Cathay,
will organize the 11th event in the series between July and
August 2005. The Federation would like to thank Cathay Pacific
warmly for covering most of the expenses involved in the
trip, including the cost of air tickets, course fees, accommodation,
meals and ground transport in South Africa. Since its inception
in 1991, the programme has attracted over 450 students to
take part. As in previous years, more than 50 delegates from
15 countries in the Asia Pacific region will have the chance
to take part in an educational safari, to appreciate the
natural scenery and vegetation and to learn more about environmental
protection. Moreover, the participants will be able to learn
something of their respective cultural traditions. Full details
about the programme is available on the website at www.hkfyg.org.hk/ye
Premiere: Star Wars Episode III 17 May
Federation is proud to announce the Gala Premiere of
Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith on the evening
of Tuesday 17 May 2005. We are grateful to Kentac
Investments Limited for the privilege, two days
in advance of the worldwide general release on 19 May.
The purpose of the event is to raise funds for our Headquarters
Redevelopment Project. We are honoured to announce that
Mr. Frederick Ma
Si-hang, Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury
and his wife, Mrs. Linda Ma, Mr Li Gang, Deputy
Director of the Liaison Office of the Central People's
Government in the HKSAR, and well-known
Canto-pop singer, Mr. Leo Ku will be our Guests of Honour.
We are sure that this eagerly anticipated episode of
Star Wars will have wide appeal
in Hong Kong and hope that the premiere will generate
much favourable public attention. We wish to mobilize
from every sector of the community and invite all would-be
sponsors to purchase special ticket packages. Please
do get in touch with Miss Ada Cheng at 2123-9598 for
thanks to Power Logistics for supporting the Young
Hong Kong Young Ambassador Scheme is jointly organized
by the Tourism Commission and the Federation
and enjoys encouraging feedback every year. The Federation
is very grateful to Power Logistics,
our generous sponsor for printing costs in 2005 and 2006.
With such sponsorship-in-kind, we can produce extensive
printouts for large-scale promotional campaigns to spread
the message of hospitality to the community. This year,
230 young ambassadors will undergo 3 weeks of intensive
training on how to receive tourists at Hong Kong's various
attractions. We are sure that with adequate resources
and the enthusiastic participation of these Young Ambassadors,
the programme will be able to nurture young people as
Hong Kong's representatives around the world. We would
welcome further partnership proposals warmly. If you
are interested in joining us, please contact Ms. Elaine
Chan (Partnership Office) at 2123-9598.
of activities for HK Advanced Level students
mid-May, a series of activities for students who have completed
their Hong Kong Advanced Level Examinations (HKAL) will
be organized in a joint effort by the Federation with MingPao.
Free workshops on university admission interviews and seminars
on career planning will be organized for about 300 F.7
graduates. Professional counselors and human resource experts
will be invited to share their views with these graduates
and offer some useful advice on interviews and job-related
work experience. The program aims to meet the education
and employment needs of the students, providing a chance
for them to become better equipped for future challenges.
for Learning and for Life
is so important today, both in education and for daily life.
It is the vital turning point of development and self-esteem.
It is about making unexpected connections and pushing at the
limits of learning. Today's children need to be encouraged
to be creative, to make the imaginative leap that allows them
to solve problems without the fear of criticism. The potential
for creativity in a 5 year old is 98%. It drops to 30% by the
age of 10 and is down to 2% by the time we are adults.* That
is why we must help them meet this challenge while they are
programmes like The Hong Kong Odyssey of the Mind Programme (OMP)
do precisely that. OMP encourages students to use divergent thinking
to solve problems. It involves hands-on, practical work to put
imaginative ideas into practice. The integration of theoretical
and applied skills learnt in the classroom with creative brainstorming
by the teams gives the students pleasure in learning and self-confidence
from having worked things out for themselves.
in Hong Kong with just four schools 8 years ago. Since then,
20,000 young people have taken part and this year 140 schools
and youth centres enrolled. The Education & Manpower Bureau
and The Hong Kong Institute of Education support us in this
endeavour and we are fortunate to have sponsorship from the
Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust and Northwest Airlines.
the years, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust has
supported many youth projects. The Odyssey of the Mind Programme
is one of the Trust sponsored programmes which offers opportunities
for our young people to express themselves creatively. I
am pleased to see more and more teams from different schools
and youth centres take part in this programme to develop
their lateral thinking and innovative problem-solving skills.
I believe, the more enlightened the young minds are, the
brighter the future will be for Hong Kong.
Mr William Yiu, Executive Director, Charities,
The Hong Kong Jockey Club
*from Toward the Creative Society. Next
Generation Forum, January 2000.
to Lung Hang Youth S.P.O.T.
the Lung Hang Youth S.P.O.T. youth
members' production team, represented
the Federation in the "Anti-Crime
90 second short clips Competition",
which is jointly organized by Kowloon
West Regional Crime Prevention Office
and Kowloon West Youth-Care Committee.
The team won two prizes, namely Champion
and 2nd runner-up, making good use
of their creativity and their high
quality video-shooting techniques
to produce clips that spread the
important message of how to fight
of modernized Jockey Club Jat Min Youth S.P.O.T.
Federation is proud to announce the
reopening of our modernized and newly
renovated Jockey Club Jat Min Youth
S.P.O.T. It now offers better-equipped
and the required resources for quality
youth services. A housewarming event
will be held on 30 April 2005 and
we have invited several guests of
honours to celebrate with us on that
Wong Youth Improvement Award Ceremony in July
Schools and school social workers have been invited to send in nominations
for The Felix Wong Youth Improvement Award. The awards ceremony will
take place on 16 July 2005 at the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine.
It gives formal recognition to local secondary school students who
have made great efforts to overcome hardships or misfortunes. This
year, approximately 20 students will be selected for the award which
includes scholarships to pursue personal development. For inquiries,
please contact Miss Lam at 2395-0161.
to hands-on: a creative combination
The Form 3 girls from Marymount Secondary School took on the
problem of creating and performing an audiovisual dream scene
for this year's Odyssey of the Mind Programme competitions.
The imagined dream had to contain a monster that could change
in character, making a crazy but happy dream into a nightmare.
The monster also had to perform certain mechanical tasks.
Just think about it. First, they needed a workable idea. Creative
minds went to work. Mythical, literary figures and
cross-cultural icons were considered and discarded. In retrospect,
they agreed that coming up with a joint, creative idea to start
work on was the most difficult part of all.
disagreement and problems arose we had to make compromises'
said Nicole,'…learning how to do that was not easy.'
very familiar with each other to begin with as we came from
different classes' said Cindy,'but after a couple of
weeks working together things got easier and we really started
to work as a team.'
It would have
been hard enough work for seasoned team players. For a newly formed
group tackling such a complex problem
this was a real achievement. First they decided on their monster
- a hair salon boss in a place called Live Town. And in that name
came a stroke of genius. It all started in a Physics class on the
subject of reflection.
thought Stephanie,'…turns into EvilTown…'
With a little
imaginative twist, she turned a lesson about mirror images into
a verbal anagram. This kind of cross-disciplinary,
divergent thinking is the essence of OMP.
Then came a
series of twists and turns. The team developed their schizoid
into a figure who started by giving free shampoos
to tourists then turned into a nightmare monster who shot the entire
population. All of this involved mechanical and manipulative tasks
for the robot that the girls had built. When they and their coach
told us about the construction process we realized what a momentous
hurdle it had involved. Not only did they need to work out how
to make the robot move, they also had their very first experience
handling basic tools - a saw, a screwdriver, a hammer and nails.
Of course, the girls' handiwork classes had given them nothing
of the kind. Just needles and thread, paints and fabric.
an amazing, rare thing for me to see', said their coach Mrs
Cheung. 'They learned fast from their mistakes and weren't
discouraged. Most of all they really enjoyed the learning process,
handing tools for the first time and realising what they were
capable of. Girls rarely get such a chance to be both so adventurous
and so practical.'
and teamwork - that was the primary message the girls gave
their experience of OMP. If teenagers can learn
at this stage of their lives what it means to be a contributing
member of a working team it bodes well for their future.
been through many ups and downs throughout the process. Definitely
a lot and the thing I treasure most is our
friendship. I feel as if we are in the same family as we all care
about each other so much.'
The team will
go to the US for the World Finals in May where they will meet
teams from countries all over the world including Europe,
Canada, Japan, China, UK, Singapore and West Africa. In reflecting
on this prospect, the girls captured the very ethos of OMP in just
a few words:
astonished to hear we were the champions. We'd never thought
a prize' said Cindy. 'Our aim was just to enjoy the process
and think creatively to work out solutions which would work’'said
What gets kids
top topic for school children is classroom bullying. This was
revealed by a study
of 8-14 year olds at Hong Kong schools
done by the Boys'& Girls' Clubs Association at the end of
last year on a large sample of 23,296 students. Asked what they
were most interested in, bullying easily beat bloodworms, politics
a year earlier 11 teenagers from a secondary school in Sheung
Shui were charged
with posting a brutally violent video,
which showed teenage thugs in school uniform, on the web. Moreover,
bullying does not only happen in schools. The practice continues
in tertiary educational institutions, especially during orientation.
At that level, it gets a new name: 'hazing'. No wonder that
young people fear it and want to find out about it.
Kong is not unusual. The figures from the US are much more
detailed, and very worrying.
There, 30% of students in secondary
school are involved in bullying - either as perpetrators or
victims. One in four American kids has been bullied and one
in five admits
to having been a bully. Bullying and similar antisocial behaviour
is seen increasingly as an important contributory factor in youth
violence outside school and is linked with many behavioural problems.
the UK there is a new, high-profile weapon that can be used
- of all ages. It is called an 'antisocial behaviour
order' (ABSO) and is a civil sanction that can be issued to
anybody over 10 years old. Over half of all those issued go
year olds. If Hong Kong had a similar system perhaps bullying
would be less likely to make headline news.
menace or marvel
Two surveys of mobile phone ownership were done recently. One*
showed that 29% of all Hong Kong children aged 6-15 own mobiles.
This is the highest figure in Asia. It compares to 90% ownership
in the same age group in the UK and 50% in the US. The other
survey, done by **Ming Pao Daily News, reported that 67% of the
under 18s in Hong Kong own mobiles and 25% of them are under
13 years old. HK adults, on the other hand, have at least one
mobile each - the highest figure in the world.
Early this year the latest mobile phone scare hit the press
with news of heightened risk of ear and brain tumours. Use of
mobiles by the under 8s was especially targeted. In Hong Kong,
the number of cases of brain cancer has tripled in the last 10
years and doctors are pointing the finger at mobiles.
The risks are not only to health. Young people regularly lose
their phones or have them stolen. They also run up big phone
bills and get into debt. On the other hand, parents see mobiles
as a form of security. Use of the phones for tracking children
is becoming increasingly popular in Europe and there is no question
of the tangible convenience and benefits of the mobile phone
in keeping in touch with home. The big question is how to weigh
up the risks versus the benefits. For the moment, the jury is
* South China Morning Post 19 March 2005
**Ming Pao Daily News 22 February 2005
TV and the family
is precious - whether you are a student, a working mother or father.
decision is what to do with it. A recent
survey* of 511 parents in Hong Kong with at least one primary-school
age child at home examined the issue. Most mothers spend more than
eight hours with the children whereas fathers spend less than 3 and
a half hours per day with them. Fathers prefer to watch TV or read
the paper it seems.
will probably join dad to watch the box as soon as they have finished
- the other activity that fathers
regularly join in with. The average child watches 3-4 hours of non-educational
TV a day in the US, including 20,000 commercials a year. How could
dads set a better example? One possibility is to give their kids
the option of doing something else with them instead - playing,
reading or kicking a football around. If it has to be the TV because
of energy, then discriminate viewing is the answer. If the kids are
teenagers, they may not be interested in the same programmes as their
parents but at least this is a time when bonding might take place.
Unfortunately, mum is likely to be in the kitchen.
Hour and Parent-Child Relationship, a study by the Committee on
Home-School Co-operation of the Education and
Manpower Bureau, February 2005.
Young people's views on job seeking process
On 20 March 2005,
the Federation's Youth Employment Network released the results
a survey about young people's views on job seeking.
The survey was conducted on site at last November's Youth Job Expo
in Northwest Kowloon when 232 young people were successfully interviewed.
It found that young people from low income families encounter greater
pressure during the job seeking process with 15.4% indicating that
transport costs are their largest item of expenditure. Some of them
turned down invitations for job interviews because they lacked resources.
therefore suggests setting up a youth job-seekers' fund to provide
for the underprivileged in order to ensure
that this group will not be deprived of job opportunities because
of lack of means. The Federation also thinks young people need to
know how important it is to spend plenty of time preparing for job
interviews and planning career goals although another point highlighted
by the survey was that most of those interviewed did not pay much
attention to serious preparation such as mock interviews. On the
positive side, 25% of those interviewed agreed that parents play
a prominent role in the job seeking process and the Federation encourages
such parental participation.