Spirit of Hong Kong | South China Morning Post
  • Sun
  • Feb 1, 2015
  • Updated: 12:37pm
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. 

Homeless man, 86, finds a peaceful place to call home

Pastor Lee Mo-fan was delighted to give street sleeper Wong Wah a helping hand. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

Partly disabled rough sleeper Wong Wah has no hard feelings towards staff who manhandled him out of a Mong Kok shopping mall last month, despite public outrage.

Monday, 2 December, 2013, 12:19pm 1 comment

Blind student’s HKDSE results speak volumes for tenacity

Tsang Tsz-kwan demonstrates the study technique that saw her star in the HKDSE exams. Photo: Jonathan Wong

Tsang Tsz-kwan excelled in this year's Diploma of Secondary Education exams. The student at Ying Wa Girls' College bagged 5** in Chinese, English and liberal studies, 5* in English and Chinese literature and a four in maths.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 2 comments

Laying the groundwork before a day at the races

Sin Zai (on the tractor), who maintains the Happy Valley racecourse turf, thrives on seeing the audience enjoy themselves during the races. Photo: Jonathan Wong

On the morning after a race night at Happy Valley, the stands are empty and the horses are resting in their stables, but the track is anything but deserted.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Freeman Lo takes a byte out of political apathy

Freeman Lo's first video, which he made long before the advent of YouTube, attracted 300,000 downloads. Photo: Edward Wong

In the difficult days of Sars, Freeman Lo Wing-cheung decided Hong Kong people needed cheering up. His remedy, a video evoking the city's can-do spirit, was an instant hit, getting 300,000 downloads within a few days of being uploaded to his website.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Final conquest in sight for intrepid adventurer Rebecca Lee

Polar researcher Rebecca Lee has one last ambition in her life, to see the opening of the Museum of Climate Change. Photo: May Tse

At a casual glance, a fish stored in Rebecca Lee Lok-sze's home could be a typical Hong Kong salted variety.

But it's actually preserved in formalin and comes from Antarctica.

It's a treasured memento for the former advertising executive, adventurer and documentary maker, who has been to the north and south poles 18 times and the Mount Everest area four times.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

If you're looking for flat flaws … Tsim's your man

Flat inspector Tsim Chai-nam checks out the windows of a property in Sha Tin. Photo: K. Y. Cheng

From public housing to luxury houses on The Peak, flat inspector Tsim Chai-nam has seen it all. And he has found one thing many homeowners have in common: the urge to rip out furnishings provided by developers.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

The man you call when the lights go out

Wong Wing-wah says that despite the challenges, the work gives him satisfaction. Photo: Edward Wong

Time was running out for New Year celebrations in a darkened Kwun Tong housing development a few years ago. Electricity supply to Tsui Ping Estate had been cut shortly after 9pm when smoke was seen coming from switches in the ground-floor transformer room.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Tofu master intent on preserving skills

Bill Chan with his son Jonathan (right) wants to keep up food quality. Photo: May Tse

Tofu may still be a popular food in Hongkongers' daily diet, but old-style shops making the bean curd delicacies are on the verge of extinction, despite efforts by the owners to pass on their traditional skills.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 2 comments

Doing the maximum good with minimal resources

Raymond Lau considers himself one of the lucky few because his muscles have deteriorated relatively slowly, allowing him to help others. Photo: Nora Tam

At 51, Raymond Lau Wai-ming has met only five other people who've lived past 50 with his condition. "For a person with a neuromuscular disease, I'm considered very old - just ancient," said Lau, who was born with spinal muscular atrophy, a genetic disorder that causes muscle deterioration and serious physical impairment.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Giving the helpless a glimmer of hope

Being exposed to the plight of the oppressed at an early age had a strong impact on Outstanding Social Worker Award winner Ng Wai-tung. Photo: Nora Tam

After 22 years of 12-hour days, social worker Ng Wai-tung is as fired up as ever about helping the city's most disadvantaged people - and pushing for policy change so that the plight of the poor is not ignored.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Is this Hong Kong's most honest man? He found HK$74,000 and handed it in

Chan Chung-lam. Photo: K.Y Cheng

A plastic bag containing about HK$74,000 in cash has been returned to its relieved owner after apparently being mistaken for rubbish and kicked out of a bus. The bag was picked up in the street by a passer-by who turned it in to police.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 1 comment

A recipe for helping others

Chan Cheuk-ming, the owner of Pei Ho Barbeque Restaurant, is happy to help the needy in Sham Shui Po. Photo: Edward Wong

Three dirty-faced men dressed in grimy rags shuffled into the Pei Ho Barbecue Restaurant in Sham Shui Po. One was obviously drunk as they sat down at a large round table. But instead of kicking them out, owner Chan Cheuk-ming called each by name and greeted them with a smile. "What'd you like? Maybe rice?"

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Big hearts and open arms the key to a happy family

The Ryan family (from left): Son-in-law Darren and daughter, Joanna, Josh, Joey, mum Gretchen and dad Jeff with his other granddaughter. Photo: Paul Yeung

It all started with a nervous long-distance phone call. "How would you like to have a 13-year-old daughter?" Gretchen Ryan asked her husband Jeff, who was on a business trip to Tokyo. What Jeff didn't know was that his wife had already agreed that little Joanna was to become part of the family.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm 2 comments

Photographer's disability doesn't stop him from daring to dream

Photographer Kevin Cheng and the Lego man at his exhibition at the Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre. No one knows what's behind the mask, says Cheng. Photo: Thomas Yau

No dreamer is ever too small and no dream is ever too big to achieve - photographer Kevin Cheng Kai-man is living testimony to this popular quote. Despite being physically stunted and confined to a wheelchair by a rare genetic disease, Cheng, 27, has fulfilled his dream of becoming a professional photographer.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm

Lost in translation: court Interpreter's daily battle

Tsang Man-sang, pictured at the High Court, once worked on the sensational trial arising from the kidnap of tycoon Teddy Wang Teh-huei. Photo: Dickson Lee

After 25 years as a court interpreter, Tsang Man-sang felt the pressure begin to mount. The man who once worked on the sensational trial arising from the kidnap of tycoon Teddy Wang Teh-huei found his short-term memory was no longer good enough to cope with the demands of instantaneous translation in a job where the outcome of a case could hinge on the accuracy of his work.

2 Dec 2013 - 12:19pm