Blog Tag: refugees
World Humanitarian Day
Posted by Peter MUIR
Every minute, 8 people are forced to flee their homes to escape war, persecution or terror. These refugees are people like you, people like me – except they had to leave everything behind to save their life.
Here is a message from Christian Action’s Centre For Refugees on World Humanitarian Day (19 August).
The United Nations’ (UN) World Humanitarian Day is held on 19 August each year. World Humanitarian Day is also an opportunity to celebrate the spirit that inspires humanitarian work around the globe. This World Humanitarian Day, the UN and its partners are calling for global solidarity with the more than 130 million people around the world who need humanitarian assistance to survive. Under the theme of ‘One Humanity’, World Humanitarian Day will highlight how the world came together in Istanbul for the World Humanitarian Summit earlier this year, and made commitments to support people affected by crisis and ensure that aid workers can safely and more effectively deliver to those in need. Since 2004 Christian Action’s Centre for Refugees has been serving the unserved through many difficult and challenging periods of their lives.
Our team of volunteers, staff and supporters are what keeps this wonderful Centre ticking day in and day out. Today, we salute you and share our admiration and gratitude for all that you have done to support the remarkable number of people who have walked through our doors these 12 years.
We have had the pleasure of being in touch with many refugees who have been resettled and gone on to lead successful and fulfilling lives. Many are so grateful and still hold Hong Kong close to their hearts, especially this center of ours and the amazing people they met over the years.
As we approach World Humanitarian Day, we ask that you continue to work with us to give a little hope to our refugees. The families and individuals we mention below are especially vulnerable and would greatly benefit from your support. Please consider how you can get involved in supporting these people as a part of your CAS or Community Engagement.
- A single male from East Africa arrived in 2009 to seek protection from HK due to ethnic persecution back home. He is truly vulnerable due to a number of medical conditions (unmanageable diabetes, tuberculosis and skin problems) which is being managed by the local hospitals. He had lost half of his body weight since his arrival and is struggling to go about daily chores due to his weak physique. He is under medication and needs to go to the clinic or hospital every day to receive treatment. Due to his condition, he is unable to share a room with another refugee but he cannot afford to have his own place without help from others.
- A family of 3 from East Africa is suffering from depression and suicidal ideation due to the trauma they endured. The father’s brother was killed in civil war and he himself was later abducted by a rebel group & imprisoned for several months. What he encountered during his imprisonment still remains fresh in his memory. Both parents are under our Psychosocial Programme and are taking medications.
- A family of 4 from a Middle Eastern country left their home due to religious persecution. Their daughter was abducted back home and is slowly getting over her traumatic experience thanks to our Psychosocial Programme where she has a dedicated counselor. To ensure that she feels safe, our Center, together with another agency, found them a decent housing location but there is a rental gap each month. In December 2015, the HK Government substantiated their case and granted them protection.
- A family of four from a Middle Eastern country who are victims of bombing and raids are severely traumatized and isolated. The lack of movement and social interaction has had severe psychosomatic effects on the mother, who has had 3 miscarriages since their arrival in HK. Their private sponsor recently left HK and is no longer able to support them.
- A single mother from a Middle Eastern country with 3 daughters was tortured and threatened to be killed before fleeing, and has also endured domestic violence for many years. She is now separated from her husband and struggling to overcome her trauma while taking care of her 3 children on her own. Not having the financial means to deal with the growing needs of her 3 daughters in an expensive city is not easy.
- A young and aspiring runner from war-torn Somalia needs your help to continue to train, as this is his way of effectively coping with his depression; running gives him a much needed escape from the memories of his war torn country and experience of abuse at the hands of religious extremists. He has won numerous competitions to date, and maintains a strict training and dietary regiment to pursue professional running in the future.
- A newly arrived former human rights activist from South Asia bears the signs of the torture he experienced back home as a result of his involvement in a high profile political case. Fearing for his life, he fled to Nepal where he initially sought asylum. He was granted refugee status and protection by the UNHCR, but eventually found his way to HK where it is safer for him. We hope to help him work around his trauma under our Psychosocial Programme but his immediate need is to cover his rental gap.
- A vulnerable man from South Asia who has been in HK for nearly a decade is suffering from depression, isolation and hopelessness. He is a victim of religious hate crime involving physical assault and other forms of harassment both back home and in HK. We are hoping to find him a suitable room that is clean, safe, and located near the Centre so he can continue to access necessary services. He is under our Psychosocial Programme for 3 years now and we are hoping that he would continue his progress but this worry is quite heavy on his shoulders.
- An elderly man and his son from a conflict-torn country in South Asia fled due to political persecution. They have been in HK for over 6 years. The elderly man is suffering from multiple medical conditions and has had a major surgery done last year but is still suffering from other conditions; he has a very poor physical and mental health. Both have been granted refugee status and have started their resettlement application, but the process can take many months to complete.
- A single mother of 6 children and 1 grand daughter was abandoned by her husband a few years ago, leaving the care of the children with her. She is struggling to make ends meet daily and is always struggling to pay their basic utility bills and provide for extra support to her children who are all attending school. With her poor health and poor language skills, she is stressed every single day.
Joint statement on refugee debate in HK
Posted by Peter MUIR
Issues related to conflict, famine, persecution are increasing the number of people fleeing their home countries in numbers never seen before. Hong Kong is not immune from being involved in issues related to refugees and asylum seekers. Like many countries of the world, the last six months has seen an increased focused on the refugees and asylum seekers coming to Hong Kong to seek refuge. Language used by the media and politicians has lead to increases in public concerns about refugees taking Hong Kong’s limited resources, even to the point where the HK government is looking at denouncing the UN’s ‘Convention on Torture, and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment’. Some have even suggested that the government set up a refugee camp outside of Hong Kong to deter refugees coming to HK.
Below is a statement released by groups and individuals concerned about this issue and the possible misunderstanding of it by the public in HK. Take a look at consider the role of the media in public perception of issues of public concern. Also have a think about how you could get involved in addressing this issue as a part of your Community Engagement.
We, the undersigned individuals and organizations, are increasingly concerned that recent inaccurate and irresponsible comments made regarding the refugee issue in Hong Kong are divisive and inflammatory. These comments are fueling a climate of fear and hostility towards both refugees and ethnic minorities alike, and run the risk of fracturing Hong Kong’s diverse and vibrant community. If negative stereotyping and hostile attitudes are repeatedly placed in the public eye in this way, xenophobia and discrimination against both refugees and ethnic minorities will continue to increase.
For this reason we cannot in good conscience allow this to continue – it is undermining Hong Kong’s social harmony. Instead, care must be taken not to exaggerate the refugee situation, nor to legitimize any form of discrimination. In shared concern, we are joined together to send out a call for calm. The politics of fear do not belong in Hong Kong. It is time for a sober and more reasoned approach.
We acknowledge that concerns have been raised following an increase in the number of protection claimants in Hong Kong and apparent abuses of the system. These concerns must be listened to, but matters must be kept in perspective, and international law should be upheld. In fact, Hong Kong actually has low levels of refugees. There is nothing remotely like a crisis and there is no need to search for dramatic measures – instead we must face up to the need to reduce delays, and to address the obvious inefficiencies in the Unified Screening Mechanism (‘USM’) system. These are complex problems, and so require nuanced approaches as well as constructive and informed dialogue, rather than resorting to divisions and blame.
Some of the proposals that have been put forward – such as Hong Kong’s withdrawal from UN Convention Against Torture (‘UNCAT’) or closed detention camps – are ill-advised, disproportionate and rash; and some are in breach of international law. Not only would withdrawal from UNCAT fail to address the concerns raised about the refugee situation, but it would roll back the rights and protections of every resident of Hong Kong against being tortured, or exposed to other abuse. This would affect us all, and we should therefore resolutely defend the continued respect for international law. At present, Hong Kong rightly enjoys a reputation as a responsible and valued member of the modern international community. But withdrawal from UNCAT would be an embarrassing step backwards for a forward-looking city. Put simply, Hong Kong is better than this.
Equally, the mass detention of those seeking sanctuary is a draconian measure and which may violate principals of international law. It cannot be the answer. Not only would it be an expensive use of public funds and an extreme overreaction, it would merely warehouse the issue, and likely cause significant harm to those who are already highly vulnerable. There are plenty of international examples to highlight the failures and problems of detention. The UNHCR have repeatedly expressed their concern over the detention of people seeking international protection.
We are therefore now calling upon all parties, including the Hong Kong Government, to work together collaboratively in ensuring that a message goes out that is loud and clear – discrimination has no place in our society. We must not allow fear-mongering and short-sighted politics to erode human rights and the rule of law in Hong Kong. We can no longer be complacent about the negative portrayal of ethnic minorities and refugees.
The implications of these changes in rhetoric are very concerning and can already be felt on the ground: more landlords are now blatantly refusing to rent already-difficult to find accommodations with our clients’ limited monthly budget of HK$1,500; signage and graffiti on the streets and social media posts slandering refugees and calling the government to refuse entry are becoming more commonplace; public officials have openly disclosed their lack of support for offering protection to refugees, while more reports have been made about mistreatment and racial profiling by police, etc. The list continues.
Much of the concern is related to the potential abuse of the Unified Screening Mechanism (USM), designed to screen and offer protection and access to minimal humanitarian welfare assistance to persons fleeing torture, persecution, war, genocide, and other severe violations to their human rights. While it would be untruthful to claim that there is no abuse to the system, it is also untruthful to claim, as many institutional and public reports have, that all refugees in Hong Kong are “fake”. And rather than employing harmful band-aid solutions such as those proposed at a recent Panel on Security, what is needed, we believe, is a comprehensive, fair, and thorough review of the USM to increase not only its efficiency, but its fairness, transparency, and effectiveness to screen and flag the most vulnerable sufferers of inhumane and degrading treatment and offer them necessary protection and welfare.
A visit to our Centre for Refugees will quickly show anyone that there is little need to argue whether there are refugees in Hong Kong who are in genuine need of support and who are fleeing genuine threats to their lives in their countries of origin. Each month we see over 600 mothers and their children, unaccompanied minors, and victims of trauma and torture who are not here to work, but are instead to seek the safety our city offers from the atrocities they would face back home. Labeling them “fake” is not only untrue, but its impact is taking away what little protection and respite they have from severe issues which stop them from going back home.
While we remain committed to providing support to our clients, we anticipate that the road to seek better protection and welfare assistance will be rife with many challenges this year. We therefore call on your–our donors, partners, and volunteers–to walk with us as you have in the past so that refugees in Hong Kong are given the dignity, support, respect, and hope to overcome these difficult few years while they are here in our city.
Organizations and Parties 機構及組織
617 Citizen Charter 六一七民間約章
Act Voice 精算思政
Action Q 大專同志行動
African Community of Hong Kong
Amnesty International Hong Kong 國際特赦組織香港分會
Amnesty International Club @ HKU
Artists Action 藝界起動
Asian Migrants Coordinating Body AMCB
Asia Pacific Mission for Migrants
Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network 亞太地區難民權利組織
Association concerning sexual violence against women 關注婦女性暴力協會
Basel Mission Hong Kong
Cameroon Solidarity Union HK
Centre for Comparative and Public Law (CCPL), Faculty of Law, HKU
Chosen Power (People First Hong Kong) 卓新力量
Christian Action 基督教勵行會
Church Refugee Ministry
City Concern of Christians Fellowship 基督徒社關團契
Civil Human Rights Front 民間人權陣線
Civic Party 公民黨
Cultural Outings 文化交遊
Daly & Associates 帝理律師行
Filguys Association Hong Kong
Free to Run
Frontline Tech Workers 前線科技人員
Franciscan Order Hong Kong JPIC Group 方濟會正義和平組
Friends of Conscience 良心之友
Football for Life Charity
Global Youth Connect
Grassroot Cultural Centre
Health in Action 醫護行者
Helpers for Domestic Helpers
Hong Kong Buildings Management and Security Workers General Union 香港物業管理及保安職工總會
Hong Kong Christian Institute 香港基督徒學會
Hong Kong Christian Council Justice and Social Concern Committee 香港基督教協進會社會公義與民生關注委員會
Hong Kong Christian Service 香港基督教服務處
Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions 香港職工會聯盟
Hong Kong Federation of Asian Domestic Workers Unions 香港亞洲家務工工會聯會
Hong Kong Federation of Women’s Centres 香港婦女中心協會
Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor 香港人權監察
Hong Kong Labour Party 工黨
Hong Kong Policy Viewers 香港政策透視
Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union 香港教育專業人員協會
Hong Kong Psychologists Concern 良心理政
Hong Kong Social Workers’ General Union 香港社會工作者總工會
Hong Kong Unison 香港融樂會
Hong Kong Women Workers’ Association 香港婦女勞工協會
Hiu Lai Campaigning 曉麗關注Plus
Inter-Agency Forum, Members of
Interfaith Cooperation Forum
International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims
The Italian Women’s Association
IT Voice IT 呼聲
Justice and Peace Commission of the Hong Kong Catholic Diocese 香港天主教正義和平委員會
Justice Centre Hong Kong
KELY Support Group 啟勵扶青會
Kowloon Union Church 九龍佑寧堂
Labour Party 工黨
League in Defense of Hong Kong’s Freedoms 保衛香港自由聯盟
League of Social Democrats 社會民主連線
Left 21 左翼21
Love and Peace Ministry 仁愛和平事工
Methodist International Church 循道衛理會國際禮拜堂
Mission for Migrant Workers
Mission to New Arrivals Ltd 新福事工協會
One Body in Christ 基督眾樂教會
Open Door 家．傭同行
PIME Missionaries Social Concern Group
Pink Alliance 粉紅同盟
Progressive Lawyers Group 法政匯思
Progressive Teachers’ Alliance 進步教師聯盟
Queer Theology Academy 性神學社
Reclaiming Social Work Movement 社工復興運動
Refugee Concern Network 關注難民網絡
Right of Abode University 居留權大學
RiverGrace International Christian Fellowship
Social Justice Alliance
Society for Community Organization 香港社區組織協會
Society of St. Vincent De Paul, St. Teresa’s Parish Conference 聖德肋撒堂聖雲先會
St Andrew’s Church 聖公會聖安德烈堂
St John’s Cathedral 聖公會聖約翰座堂
Thai Migrant Worker’s Union 泰國移工工會
The Association for the Advancement of Feminism 新婦女協進會
The Department of Anthropology, CUHK
The Hong Kong Society for Asylum-seekers and Refugees 香港尋求庇護者及難民協會
The India Association Hong Kong 印度協會
The Italian Women’s Association
The Professional Commons 公共專業聯盟
The Zubain Foundation 小彬紀念基金會
Transgender Resource Center 跨性別資源中心
Union Church HK 香港佑寧堂
Union of Nepalese Domestic Workers in Hong Kong 香港尼泊爾家務勞動者工會
Umbrella Blossom 撐傘落區行動
Vidler & Co. Solicitors 韋智達律師行
Women Coalition of HKSAR 香港女同盟會
Women’s Studies Research Centre HKU
World Organisation Against Torture 世界禁止酷刑組織
Azan MARWAH, Barrister at Law
Billy R. LEUNG, Open University of Hong Kong
Bill Lay, Secretary General of Civic Party, member of Election Committee ( Social Welfare Sector) 賴仁彪, 公民黨秘書長, 選舉委員會委員(社會福利界）
CHAN Billy Shiu Yeung, Sha Tin District Council Member 陳兆陽，沙田區議員
CHAN Chu Fung, Thomas, Hong Kong Community College 陳曙峰
CHAN Lih Shing, Alex, Hong Kong Institute of Education 章力行
CHAN M M Johannes
CHAN Yee May, Hong Kong Baptist University
CHEUK Ka Kin, Leiden University
CHENG Tat-hung, Eastern District Council Member 鄭達鴻，東區區議員
Connie KWOK, Registered Social Worker
Daniel LAM 林天祐傳道
Dr. Carmen TONG, Department of Sociology, HKU
Dr. HO Sik Ying, Petula, Department of Social Work and Social Administration, HKU 何式凝
Dr. Hon Fernando CHEUNG Chiu-hung, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員張超雄
Dr Hon KWOK Ka-ki, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員郭家麒議員
Dr. Barbara E. HARRELL-BOND, OBE
Dr. Lisa LIM, School of English, HKU
Dr. Mirana SZETO, Comparative Literature, HKU 司徒薇
Earl DENG, Barrister-at-Law 鄧鈞堤大律師
Farzana ASLAM, Faculty of Law, HKU
Father Franco MELLA 甘浩望神父
HO Wai Yip, Department of Social Sciences, Hong Kong Institute of Education 何偉業
Hon Alvin YEUNG Ngok-kiu, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員楊岳橋
Hon Claudia MO, Legislative Councillor 立法會議員毛孟靜
Hon Charles Peter MOK, JP 立法會議員莫乃光, JP
Hon CHEUNG Kwok Che, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員張國柱
Hon Dennis KWOK, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員郭榮鏗
Hon Emily LAU Wai-hing, JP, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員劉慧卿, JP
Hon Kenneth LEUNG, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員梁繼昌
Hon LEE Cheuk-yan, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員李卓人
Hon LEUNG Kwok-hung, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員梁國雄
Hon Albert HO Chun-yan, Legislative Councilor 立法會議員何俊仁
Hon IP Kin-yuen立法會議員葉建源
Jeffrey TAM, Barrister-at-Law 譚俊傑大律師
Joe Y.F. LAU, Philosophy Department, HKU
Jonathan MAN, Solicitor 文浩正律師
Karen KONG, Faculty of Law, HKU
Kelley LOPER, Faculty of Law, HKU
Ken, TSANG Kin Chiu, Civic Party & Social Worker 曾健超
Kevin YAM, Solicitor 任建峰律師
Kim KWOK, Caritas Institute of Higher Education
LAU Shu Wai Carl, Hong Kong Institute of Education 劉樹偉
LEE Kim Ming, Community College City University of Hong Kong 李劍明
LIONG Chan Ching, Mario, Centennial College
Lisa LEUNG, Associate Professor, Department of Cultural Studies, Lingnan University
LO Kai Chung, Registered Social Worker, Community College of City University
LUI Ching Wu, Lake, Hong Kong Institute of Education 呂青湖
Margaret NG, Barrister at Law 吳靄儀大律師
Martin JONES, Lecturer in International Human Rights Law, University of York /Adjunct Professor at HKU
MOK KIN SHING KUNG KONG DISTRICT COUNILLOR 莫建成，觀塘區議員
NG Fung Sheung, Isabella, Hong Kong Institute of Education 伍鳳嫦
Paul ZIMMERMAN, Pokfulam District Councillor 司馬文, 薄扶林區議員
Philip J DYKES, Senior Counsel
Professor Johannes M M CHAN
Professor Noam CHOMSKY.
Oscar LAI Man Lok, Demosistō 黎汶洛
POON Wing-Lok, The University of Hong Kong 潘永樂
Professor Gordon MATTHEWS, Department of Anthropology, CUHK
Puja KAPAI, Faculty of Law, HKU
Randy SHEK, Barrister-at-Law 石書銘大律師
Rev. Paul CHAN 陳啟興牧師
Rob CONNELLY, Barrister-at-law
Robert TIBBO, Barrister at Law, Member of HK Bar Association
Shaphan MARWAH, Barrister at Law
SHIU Ka Chun, Lecturer, Department of Social Work, Hong Kong Baptist University 邵家臻
Simon YOUNG, Faculty of Law, HKU
Stephen FISHER 余志穩
Tim PARKER, Barrister-at-Law
Timothy O’LEARY, Head, School of Humanities, HKU
TO Ho Pong, Community College City University of Hong Kong
Vivek MAHBUBANI, Award winning bi-lingual stand up comedian
Wendy KWAN, Solicitor 關穎怡律師
Wilson LEUNG, Barrister-at-Law 梁允信大律師
WONG Wai Man, Natalie, HKUSPACE
Yantl SZE, Barrister-at-Law
Zachary WONG, Yuen Long District Councillor 黃偉賢，元朗區議員
Zoran POPOSKI, Hong Kong Institute of Education
DC students receive $3,000 grant
Posted by Peter MUIR
A group of DC students who will work with Christian Action’s Chungking Mansions Service Centre has won a HK$3,000 grant to implement their project. The group, which will provide Cantonese and Visual Arts lessons to refugees who are members of the Chungking Mansions Service Centre, were awarded the grant as a part of Kids4Kids ‘Act!on for a Cause’ campaign. This campaign aims at mobilizing youth from diverse backgrounds to take action on real life social issues. Members of the DC student group this week presented their project details at the Kids4Kids centre in Wan Chai. Their project will
provide educational and recreational opportunities for adult refugees. Funds from the grant will be used to cover a part of the costs for refugees to travel to DC where lessons will be held.
DC Amnesty International refugee awareness week
Posted by Peter MUIR
The DC Amnesty International Group will be hosting a refugee awareness week. Amnesty International actively strives to protect the rights of refugees. In the recent European Union refugee crisis, Amnesty International has petitioned the EU to allow refugees a safe passageway into the EU- that of which has prompted the response of over 280,000 people. Although the EU continue to show minimal commitment to this issue, AI continues to press this issue to ensure refugee the rights they deserve. Currently there are around 10,000 refugees in Hong Kong, who receive minimal support form the HK government.
Over the course of the next week the DC Amnesty International Group will be hosting various fundraising events within which your participation would be much appreciated.
There will be a photo exhibition throughout the whole week in the foyer depicting photos and information about refugees to give you a visual perspective on their issues. They are pictures of real refugees and hopefully will inspire you into taking the first steps towards helping these people get through the struggles they face.
Amnesty Rep Talk (Y10 and Y11)
We have also invited a representative from Amnesty International HK to come over and give a talk about refugees and how you can help out with the issue.
When: 27th of January, 1st Block (LT)
Yellow Ribbons/Hair Spray
We will also be selling yellow ribbons for $5 which you can buy and wear to show your support to the cause. (All proceeds will go to Amnesty International to help HK refugees)
When: Before school and Lunch time everyday of the week
There will also be a donation box in the foyer throughout the week
Year 11/12 Students needed to Teach
Posted by Peter MUIR
A message from students leading the Chung King Mansion Refugee Service Centre group:
Hi Years 11 and 12!
We need your skills! Christian Action, a local refugee organisation is in need of help. Each year hundreds of refugees and asylum seekers enter Hong Kong, some staying for up to 10 years without the opportunity to work. Most of them are outsiders socially and have limited skills to navigate Hong Kong. DC is providing Visual Arts and Cantonese language skills to these refugees. The lessons will start early next year – after school for a hour and half – continuing on for once a week, for many weeks, but we need to begin planning so they are successful!
Here is the link to the sign up sheet to help refugees and asylum seekers:
If you have any skills in Cantonese and Visual Arts, or even interest, please put your name down! If you have any other skills to offer don’t be afraid to contact: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information will come soon, after we have enough people signed up!
Winter Clothes Donation for Refugees
Posted by Peter MUIR
Chungking mansion Centre for Refugees
Posted by Peter MUIR
Christian Action’s Centre For Refugees at Chungking Mansions is a well-established service provider assisting those in need in HK. The centre relies on donors and sponsors to continue the work that they are doing.
How could raising awareness about the centre and the issues they engage with be a part of your community engagement? If you were to choose to fund raise for the centre, how would you do so in a creative way (ie not another bake sale proposal)?
Save the Kitchen Bake Off
Posted by Peter MUIR
You might not see it day to day (or you might choose not to see it), but there a large number of refugees and asylum seekers here in in Hong Kong. Related to the issues of conflict and political issues we see on the news, a number of refugees come to Hong Kong to seek refuges and asylum. Something that many would not realize is that one third of this cities population is actually comprised of refugees. Many of the founding families of Hong Kong fled here, seeking safety and haven, far away from Mainland China during the 1950s Cultural Revolution. These were people fleeing from endless war and violent persecutions – similar to today’s refugees coming to Hong Kong
Ongoing global conflicts, whether religious, economical, and political, have left individuals to whole families no opportunity but to leave homes, possessions, loved ones, and identity. Hong Kong reprises its role as a popular sanctuary for 21st century refugees and asylum seekers; a role that we hope can accommodate, and provide dignified living standards for all.
Hong Kong is now home to thousands of refugees and asylum seekers leading lives which are increasingly under privileged. Due to the higher and higher costs of living, a refugee’s life is heavily subsidised. Christian Action’s Chungking Mansion Service Centre (CKMSC) is one of Hong Kong’s most prominent refugee charity organisation. Through providing humanitarian assistance, education and training, and psychosocial support to refugees, they advocate for a refugee tolerant and accepting city and system. The CKMSC is known for its kitchen, directed at serving refugees on a day-to-day basis. The kitchen’s daily food assistance programme provides vital sustenance to men, women, and children fleeing from war, torture, and other unthinkable violations to their human rights by offering three meals a day during the week and a healthy lunch on Saturdays. Meals are prepared by a full-time cook and a network of local partners, including churches and schools; Feeding Hong Kong and FoodLink. The CKMSC kitchen is more than just a place to eat- it is a “home away from home” where refugees are able to connect with the community in a safe and familiar place that serves nutritional meals. The CKMSC food programme provides close to 20,000 meals a year, and is perhaps the only space of its kind in the city.
However the CKMSC is in danger of losing its food programme, and needs vital help to save it. Financial support hasn’t been enough to cover all costs, even through strong subsidisation from kinds churches and individuals. To support the kitchen in continuing to support Hong Kong’s refuges, a group of Discovery College students have set up a ‘Save the Kitchen Bake Off’ charity event. Students are encouraged to gather friends to create a team, bake their own goods and then sell competitively. Who ever sells the most, WINS! All money goes towards helping sustain the food program CKMSC is running.
Without the food program, refugees and asylum seekers are forced into buying expensive groceries and meals, this can even lead to homelessness and starvation! If you want to get involved in helping the underprivileged, the mistreated, then enter your team in the ‘Save the Kitchen Bake Off’. Please contact for more details email@example.com.
Hungry for Change
Posted by Peter MUIR
The Justice Centre Hong Kong have launched a new campaign called Hungry for Change which provides students an opportunity to take action for a meaningful cause.
What is it?
Hungry for Change is a new campaign in Hong Kong, which seeks to bring about change to the way refugees must access food here. It challenges the public to eat like a refugee for three days and petitions the Hong Kong Government to allow refugees to eat in dignity. The campaign will run Tuesday-Thursday October 14-16, culminating on World Food Day (Thursday October 16).
Refugees and Food
We all have to eat. It’s a basic human need for everyone, no matter where we come from. But for refugees in Hong Kong, it’s an especially hard need to fulfill. Refugee men, women and children flee from some of the world’s worst human rights abuses and experience things that you and I could never imagine. They often arrive in Hong Kong with nothing but the clothes on their back and, not allowed to work, they have no income of their own to help them survive.
So how do they eat? The Hong Kong Government provides them with pre-packaged bags of food, which refugees pick up every five to ten days from a shop often far from where they live. The food is said to be worth HK$40 per day, supposed to cover three meals each day and last for up to ten days. But, when we price-compare the food they receive with food for sale in supermarkets, we see that the food they get is worth much less. Often it runs out before the next pick up; sometimes it is expired; always it is limited in choice and quantity.
But it does not have to be this way, for in a city of plenty like Hong Kong, no one should have to live like this.
So, what can you do?
With Hungry for Change, you can join us in taking positive action to change this by doing a few simple and effective things. You can:
- Take the HK$40-a-day food challenge in solidarity with Hong Kong’s refugees, to walk a few days in their shoes and help bring life to their experiences.
- Get sponsored through this challenge and donate the money to provide food for refugees at Justice Centre Hong Kong and to support our advocacy work on refugee issues
- Sign the petition to ask the Hong Kong Government to let refugees eat in dignity by giving them small amounts of cash to buy their own food.
- Spread the word and use the power of social media to get friends and family involved.
We would like some senior DC students to drive this campaign at DC, and get as many people as possible to take up the challenge to support Hong Kong’s refugees. Because change only happens when we take action together. Email Mr Muir if you are interested in driving this campaign (for Yr 11 or Yr12 students only)
Be the Change. Be Hungry for Change