Volunteer scheme boosts skills
I joined a community programme called Need Service this year. It helps needy people, such as the elderly, the mentally handicapped, and underprivileged children.
Before our first training day, I thought it would be easy. But the fact is you need to put in a lot of preparation and have a lot of skill to serve them well.
The person in charge taught us a planning formula, which included the 5Ws and 2Hs: what, when, who, why and where, and how and how much. It is a useful method to plan anything in our daily lives. For example, if we want to hold a Christmas party, we can use it to plan the date, venue, participants, budget and so on.
To communicate with the elderly, the mentally handicapped and children, our tutor said we should be patient and be ready to repeat ourselves.
When I took part in volunteer work before, everything had already been planned, and we just needed to follow the schedule. This time, I had a chance to plan some voluntary service for my team. It was a great experience.
Tom Chan, Tsuen Wan Public Ho Chuen Yiu Memorial College
Moon mission will benefit China
I agree with the debate topic in Face/off (Young Post, March 6) that 'China's plan to put a person on the moon will benefit its people'.
Most importantly, the mainland's reputation will grow. A country that has the ability to send people to the moon is a strong one. Hence, other countries will try to boost their economic ties with China. Also, some of the technology developed for the lunar mission could be used to enhance the people's quality of life. For example, it could be used to increase agricultural output. In China, many farmers still plant their crops by hand. Technology could reduce their workload and boost production.
Some people think putting a person on the moon will increase the financial burden on mainlanders. I disagree. China has more than US$3.2 trillion in foreign reserves. Even if the government uses part of that money for education and welfare, and sets aside some for unexpected future needs, there's still enough left to develop a space programme.
A lunar mission will create long-term benefits for China.
Chuk Wing-lung, King Ling College
Time to stop animal cruelty
I am writing in response to the report 'SPCA urges ban on seal imports from Canadian hunts' (South China Morning Post, March 9). I support a ban and believe it will show Hong Kong's determination to protect the environment.
In recent years, locals have raised concerns about environmental protection. For example, some people have dropped shark's fin soup from menus. However, our government still allows the import of animal products like seal fur and ivory.
I remember an Oscar-winning movie called The Cove. People were horrified when they saw how dolphins were killed by Japanese fishermen. I have seen photos of dead seals, too, showing how hunters killed them to get their fur. It was so disturbing I could not look at the photos again.
While children watch seals play at Ocean Park, and we teach the next generation to protect the environment, our government is allowing the import of products made from Canadian seals. It is the government's responsibility to tell people that cruelty to animals should not be tolerated.
We should not be cruel to creatures in order to profit from them. We have to protect the planet, including every creature living on it.
Elaine Chow Yuen-ting
Let's live our lives to the fullest
When one of our loved ones suddenly passes away, we are sad and heartbroken. When a famous person who has gained our affection - like Apple's co-founder Steve Jobs - dies, many may get emotional.
Death scares us, and we try to resist it. However, we'll all die one day. It's the end of everyone's journey.
So why worry about it? Why don't we just enjoy life? We should treasure what we have and have no regrets.
We are the rulers of our own destiny, our beautiful lives. Let's try our best to make them as colourful and meaningful as possible.
Wing Lam Wing-tung, Hong Kong Chinese Women's Club College