Spirit of Hong Kong

Spirit of Hong Kong

Spirit of Hong Kong is a series that looks behind the scenes of one of Asia's largest and most vibrant cities by focusing on those whose contributions often go unnoticed yet are vital to the everyday success of Hong Kong. 

Spirit of Hong Kong Awards winners embody spirit of the city

(Front, left to right) Carmen Yau and Willy Law; (back, left to right) Robin Hu, CEO of SCMP Group; Lee Ming-sun; Elsa Tse Ngar-yee; Elana Ho; Chan Kit-ying; Tsang Tsz-kwan; Chief Secretary Carrie Lam; Jenny Law Chun-heung; Pastor Lee Mo-fan; Jill Robinson; Kan Yiu-kwong; and Dr David Pang Ding-jung, chairman of SCMP Group.Photo: Felix Wong

They are 11 ordinary people who lead extraordinary lives. People who achieve against all the odds and set an example for others. 

Monday, 2 December, 2013, 12:19pm 2 comments

Businessman Jong Lee makes the solution suit the need

Jong Lee helps young, rehabilitated drug addicts get back on their feet. Photo: SCMP

The tailor sits at his table, paying great attention to detail. At Bonham Strand’s workshop in Lai Chi Kok, even the button holes on the suits are hand-stitched.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Scientist who wants to rock the world

Young Ng, president of the geoconservation association, pictured in 2008. Photo: Oliver Tsang

Young Ng is into rock. Not the fender bender, Rolling Stones, raise the rafters, wah wah guitar, screaming groupies kind of rock. No, he’s into the hard stuff. The granite, Jurassic, volcanic rock that’s really old – even older than Mick Jagger.

2 Dec 2013 - 2:08pm

No cause too petty for celebrity animal activist Sharon Kwok

Sharon Kwok poses in Shek O. Photo: Antony Dickson

The former Miss International Chinatown USA orders fries, and tucks in. Sharon Kwok has definitely got the glam element – she was a successful model and then starred in a slew of Hong Kong movies in the 1990s.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Take 2: the remaking of celluloid city

Anthony Wong in this year's Ip Man: The Final Fight. The actor is one of the industry's skeptics: "I've been claiming our cinema was dying for two decades".

Hong Kong cinema is either dead or has transformed itself into a sophisticated new creative powerhouse. It just depends on who you're talking to and how you define the terms to start with.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Devoted yoga teacher shares her gift of serenity

Yoga instructor Sanjukta Sharma. Photo: Edmond So

Sanjukta Sharma was introduced to yoga in her hometown of Assam in northeast India when she was just 11. Shama learned the tenets of yoga at a young age and continued to practise, as a career in financial services, marriage and two children followed.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Gladys Chung-yan, the dream believer

Gladys Law Chung-yan, Marketing Director of Go Inside cafe in Hung Hom Photo: Paul Yueng

While Gladys Law Chung-yan believes it’s important to feed the hungry at her café, she thinks it’s even more important to fill their souls.

What began as a “suspended voucher” programme for the needy has given her the confidence to go much further.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Waiting for a sign society cares

Lau Lai-fong, President of Hong Kong Association of the Deaf Photo: Nora Tam

Hello and goodbye are the same in sign language for Cantonese – it’s a friendly wave. The sign for love in Hong Kong is arms crossed over the chest.

Lau Lai-fong, the president of the Hong Kong Association of the Deaf, does a rubbing motion with the flat of her right hand over the fist of her left. That’s love in sign language in Japan.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Spirit of Hong Kong: Time to vote for the People's Choice Award

Spirit of Hong Kong: Time to vote for the People's Choice Award

Over the past months, we have shared with you more than 100 stories of Hong Kong heroes - people who have been nominated for the Spirit of Hong Kong Awards for inspiring or empowering others; for giving selflessly within the community; for their honesty and integrity; or by showing perseverance and endurance.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

A poet at heart who harbours a love for his city

Winston Chu Ka-sun poses to photographer at the Maritime Museum at Central pier. Photo: SCMP Pictures

She was a small woman, this lawyer’s mother, but she had an indomitable will. Something that he’s perhaps inherited. And unluckily for the Hong Kong government, she also had some money saved up, which she handed to her son to use for legal challenges to save Victoria Harbour.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 1 comment

'Ordinary mum' on an extraordinary mission

Elana Ho holds an orphan baby following surgery at a mainland hospital to correct his cleft palate. Photo: SCMP

An early indication of the extent of Elana Ho Tsao Yuk-lan's devotion to children came in her mid-20s. The wife of a lawyer, and with two children of her own - including a daughter with special needs - Ho adopted her sister's three children.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Helping Hand volunteer's errands of mercy

94-year-old Shek Man-kiu (left) is seen with Mak Kam-fung (right) who has been a Helping Hands employee for 15 years and a volunteer for six years Photo: Edward Wong

Helping others doesn’t have to be about grand gestures or large philanthropic projects.

It can be the little things that count.

In the case of Mak Kam-fung, a volunteer at a Helping Hand elderly home, it’s about being there for the residents on a daily basis.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Christopher Schrader – man of extraordinary action

Christopher Schrader during his momentous 52-day walk across the Gobi Desert in 2011 Photo: Christopher Schrader

He’s the youngest person on record to have crossed the Gobi Desert on foot – from May to July 2011. He spent 52 days facing biting winds, sandstorms and ice-cold nights, knowing that life was on a knife-edge and feeling that he had never felt “more human”.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 1 comment

Entrepreneur Lizette Smook loves Hong Kong, healthy innovation, and the environment

Lizette Smook, chief executive of  Innovasions, shows off some her firm's environment friendly bowls and shopping bags, Photo:

Lizette Smook fell in love with Kai Tak Airport when she came to the city from South Africa on a buying trip 17 years ago. She engineered her career so that she could get a post here and had a successful career working for, among others, Nike and Next.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Blind student's words speak of grit and spirit

Tsang Tsz-kwan is adapting to her new school life as she studies for her four-year translation degree at Chinese University. Photo: Felix Wong

The 20-year-old blind and hearing-impaired student sits in a room at her alma mater Ying Wa Girls' School. Here's the girl who made headlines in July with her excellent Diploma of Secondary Education examination results. She scored 5* and above in five subjects and a 4 in the sixth.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm