• Fri
  • Dec 26, 2014
  • Updated: 6:19pm


Ask Melanie: Why you should afford to be charitable

How much is enough? Photo: Nora Tam

We would like our family budget to include giving to charities. How should we incorporate this?

Giving is often spontaneous. Things happen over the course of a year that tug at the heart strings and loosen the purse strings. This is as it should be but you can also approach gift giving in the context of your wider financial objectives, so as not to compromise family goals.

Monday, 24 December, 2012, 4:21am

Choosing wisely is an art

Silver plated frame bookends (above) and Cochine fragrance diffuser (right) from Indigo Living

Trinkets, knickknacks, dust collectors - call them what you will. Some gifts, while given with love, should have been left in the shop.

As anyone who has ever received an unwanted gift knows, there is an art to selecting the perfect present, and Horizon Plaza has plenty of help at hand.

7 Sep 2012 - 11:01am

From the experts: Organ donation

About 10 per cent of families in Britain oppose organ donation.Photo: Corbis

The British Medical Association has recently suggested that patients should be kept alive using elective ventilation, or life support, to facilitate the harvesting of their organs for donation.

21 Aug 2012 - 10:36am

Clear charity rules can boost giving

Mainland China has more than 10 per cent of the world's billionaires and 1.4 million households with assets of at least US$1 million. Despite the ever-growing wealth of its people, though, they are among the world's least giving, being near the bottom of global lists for charity and philanthropy.

15 Aug 2012 - 11:03pm

Volunteers discover how helping others helps yourself

Within the next few days, students will have ended their school year and packed for holidays in exotic destinations, visits to home countries, summer camps, internships and part-time jobs. But long summer days can sometimes stretch with boredom. For teenagers whose college applications loom on the horizon, volunteering is a way to fill some of those sweltering days.

1 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Switch to gift registries

Weddings are filled with tradition, from the gown to the exchange of vows and rings, the reception and banquet.

Offering a red envelope at a Chinese wedding may be customary, but these days some couples are opting for gifts rather than money.

Brides- and grooms-to-be are setting up gift registries at their favourite lifestyle or specialist store.

28 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

A prisoner in her own mansion

The Haunting of Charity Delafield By Ian Beck Published by The Bodley Head ISBN 978 0370 332109

Charity Delafield is lonely. She's almost 13, yet knows nothing about what goes on in the world.

25 Jun 2012 - 12:00am

Thinking about favours

Wedding favours are a popular tradition. But when a guest list runs into the hundreds, choosing items that are within budget and suit a range of ages and personalities requires prudent planning.

31 May 2012 - 12:00am

Changing lives, step by step

I am now entering the final month of my 61/2-month long Walking Home From Mongolia expedition. Along the way, my cameraman Leon McCarron and I have crossed the Gobi Desert and northern China in winter, and progressed into the beautiful springtime of the central and southern Chinese mountains. We have taken a dip in the Yellow River and the Yangtze. The Pearl awaits us this week.

8 May 2012 - 12:00am

Helping others from the heart

I have recently become quite involved with a charity here at university. I spend several hours a week at meetings, organising fund-raisers and publicising our events.

Some of my friends have been questioning me about why I devote so much of my time to a charity and what I have to gain from my work.

16 Feb 2012 - 12:00am

Master Ho hands apprentice a gift-wrapped birthday present

Apprentice Ben So Tik-hung was given a 26th birthday present by master Peter Ho Leung in the form of a ride on Healthy Blueberry in a Class Four on the dirt. So hustled up from gate one on the speedy five-year-old and took control over the extended dirt mile to record the gelding's fourth career victory and his 16th for the season.

12 Feb 2012 - 12:00am

Hip hot HK

Who's calling?

26 Jan 2012 - 12:00am

Hate it? Don't bin it, pass it on

Although this city's garish skyscraper Christmas lights and mall decorations usually fail to inspire my festive spirit, a recent trip to London ignited a fair amount of excitement. The smell of pine, impeccably wrapped presents and comical knitwear suddenly seemed appealing.

23 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

They're giving it all away

When Cheryl Wilson gave birth to her first daughter three years ago, friends and family showered her with so many baby gifts - many of them duplicates - that she ran out of storage space at home. She appreciated the kind gestures, but as a successful professional married to another one, she couldn't help seeing the gifts as something of a waste.

4 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

Charities bear the brunt of scandals

The China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation is struggling to meet a 300 million yuan (HK$365.6 million) donation target for this year amid widespread distrust of charity projects following a recent spate of high-profile scandals implicating several leading mainland charitable organisations.

19 Oct 2011 - 12:00am