Brave little road warriors finish big feat
A four-kilometre walk might not seem much of a challenge to an adult. But for the hundreds of kindergarten pupils who walked the length of Discovery Bay with their parents and teachers, it was more than just a walk in the park.
More than 500 children and adults participated in this year's charity walk on November 19 to raise money for the needy.
It was the Discovery Mind International Play Centre and Kindergarten's sixth year organising the event, in conjunction with Operation Santa Claus (OSC).
It has become a tradition in the Discovery Bay community on Lantau Island. Businesses donated books to be sold on the day and arranged for a clown to entertain the children.
Jointly organised by the South China Morning Post and RTHK, OSC has supported more than 100 charities since it was established in 1988. This year it will raise money for 16 Hong Kong charities.
Julie Rebelo and her two children took part in the Discovery Bay walk. 'My son insisted on walking from start to finish, so he understands the message of the walk,' Rebelo said.
A grey sky didn't dampen the spirits of the walkers, who were decked out in bright red shirts for the occasion. They celebrated their achievement in a park at the end of the walk, and the children received certificates.
'The children know they are raising money to help many who are less fortunate than themselves, and it is an enjoyable morning with the children and parents. The children particularly enjoyed the clown show after the walk,' said Doris Ng, principal of Discovery Mind.
'With Christmas coming up, we want the kids to know that it's not just about getting, it's also about giving,' said Kabeeta Gurung, supervisor of the school's Tung Chung centre.
'The little ones and their families are not only giving their time, but also their energy - it's quite a walk for their short legs.'
The Parent Teacher Association held a bake sale - cupcakes with pink icing and brownies disappeared fast.
Discovery Mind school director Cynthia Chow Ching-yee said: 'We like that Operation Santa Claus gives to a variety of charities every year, so that we are able to help different groups of people.'
The Post's acting editor-in-chief, Cliff Buddle, also donned a red T-shirt for the four-kilometre walk. 'It's an impressive turnout today. We hope this event can raise awareness for the kids on the need to be civic-minded and bring in donations for our beneficiaries,' he said.
Money raised from the walk is still being collected, but Jane Wilson, a teacher and organiser of the event, expects more than HK$100,000. Last year, Discovery Mind Kindergarten was OSC's top school fund-raiser, amassing a total of HK$140,000.
How you can give
Donate online by credit card at osc.scmp.com
Donations can be made at ATMs or at any branch of HSBC: account number 502-676299-001 for SCMP CHARITIES LTD-OPERATION SANTA CLAUS
You can make a donation by cheque, payable to 'SCMP CHARITIES LTD-OPERATION SANTA CLAUS' and mail to: Operation Santa Claus, Morning Post Centre, 22 Dai Fat Street, Tai Po Industrial Estate, New Territories, Hong Kong
Donations of HK$100 or more are tax-deductible. For a tax receipt, send the completed donation form and original bank receipt with your name, address and phone number to the address above.
Contact us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, telephone 2680 8159 or visit us online at osc.scmp.com