Charity targets schools to inspire poor children to aim higher in work and life One day it would be nice to hear a positive story about Tin Shui Wai rather than the statistics about poverty and youth at risk living in dysfunctional, low-income families. Tin Shui Wai is an example of how not to do urban planning, with thousands of poorer Hongkongers and new arrivals lumped together because they can't afford to own or rent elsewhere. There are not enough jobs there, no manufacturing, no industry and insufficient social facilities. 'Hong Kong policy puts all the deprived families here because they have no money to negotiate and no money to buy flats in the city,' said Raymond Fung Hing-kau, social work supervisor for youth and community service at Caritas Hong Kong. Mr Fung wants to engage primary school pupils in the area, helping them to gain social skills and exposure to the world and to lead constructive lives. 'Through Operation Santa Claus (OSC) we will be able to help 100 children and 100 families,' said Mr Fung. 'We'll split them up into eight small groups so that when they are doing activities or thinking about society or themselves, the process is more in-depth.' The year-long scheme - which Mr Fung would love to see extended to two or three years if the money were available - targets the deprived primary school children of Tin Shui Wai district. Potential participants will be scanned in primary schools by school social workers and teachers. Over the year, the children will take part in group sessions to teach them how to take care of themselves and how to manage their emotions. They will also go on trips that may include the airport, Legislative Council and a university for them to learn about things outside their normal lives. 'This will inspire them, increase their expectations of life and also give them an insight into how to get into university,' Mr Fung said. The scheme will also help many single parents - often mainland mothers - to meet other parents so that they can make friends and feel less lonely and isolated. Caritas also wants to train parents to use less corporal punishment. 'It's a typical type of parenting in Chinese society. I don't think it is easy to change as most of the parents bring their children up like this so they use it as a method to train their children. There is a need to educate them to change their minds on how to bring up their children,' Mr Fung said. Through OSC funding, Caritas will hire an extra social worker for a year to work with other social workers and teachers at three primary schools in Tin Shui Wai.