#Hashtag Hong Kong



    Listen out for #Hashtag Hong Kong, on Sunday mornings. Our new programme updates the old format and content of Letter to Hong Kong.

    The focus will be on issues affecting civil society, as we hear from representatives of NGOs, associations, statutory bodies and non-profit groups.

    And each week there'll also be a musical choice*!

    (Sundays 8.15am - 8.25am)

    *The song is not included in its entity in the podcast due to copyright issue. 



    Joseph Lau, Chief Commissioner of The Scout Association of Hong Kong

    In Hong Kong, three Commemoration Ceremonies are held annually to commemorate the soldiers and citizens who were killed during the two World Wars. Representatives of the Scout Association of Hong Kong attend all three ceremonies to pay tribute to the Scouts and Scout Leaders who lost their lives in carrying out the defence duties for Hong Kong in the last war.
    The first two Commemoration Ceremonies are organised by the Hong Kong SAR Government on 3 September, and Chung Yeung Festival. September 3 is the “Victory Day of the Chinese People’s war of resistance against aggression”. Chung Yeung is traditionally the day when we pay respect to our ancestors and elders who have passed away.
    The third Ceremony, known as Remembrance Day Ceremony, is organised by the Hong Kong Ex-servicemen’s Association on Remembrance Day (the second Sunday of November) in memory of those who were killed in the two World Wars and all conflicts since. In particular, we remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the defence of Hong Kong during the Japanese invasion and occupation from 1941 to 1945.
    This year’s Remembrance Day Ceremony was held on 14 November.   In addition to the representatives of the Scout Association, and for the first time, the heads of 13 local Schools laid wreaths at the ceremony in commemoration of their students and staff (in their capacity as Scouts and Scout Leaders) who sacrificed their lives defending Hong Kong during the last world war. The Organisers invited the Scouts from one of these Schools to undertake ceremonial duties for the occasion.
    Although no official documents give the exact number of Scout members killed, records do show that over 1,125 Scouts and Scout Leaders joined the Air Raid Precautions Despatch Corps set up by the government in 1938 at the dawn of the Second World War. They carried out civil defence duties such as dispatch riders for delivering messages, first aiders, caring for the wounded, manning of air raid shelters, and guarding places of importance etc. A large number of these Scout members later joined the Volunteers and fought in the brief battle of Hong Kong in December 1941.   Unfortunately, many of them were killed in the fighting and during the Japanese occupation. 
    Their glorious deeds are consistent with the Promise they made upon becoming a Scout: to do their duty to the community they belong to, to help other people at all times and to obey the Scout Law, all of which are the core values of Scouting. 
    And those values have never changed despite all the difficulties and challenges we faced in the past century. We continually encourage our members to contribute to our country and society by participating in community services, which have always been a part of Scout activities. To promote the value of “helping others”, the “Scout Theme of the Year” has been our perennial signature event. In 2020-2022, “Do you Best, Serve the Community” is our annual theme. Scout members and Scout units are encouraged to organise community services for our society. However, the spread of COVID-19 forced the suspension of face-to-face activities. Fortunately, with the integration of information technology, we can continue our services without physical barriers. For example, despite the suspension of regular visits to the elderly, videos with a variety of entertainments including Erhu and traditional Scout songs performances were produced and uploaded to social media to convey our love and care to the elderly. Younger members joined online activities to share health tips with others. They also completed and sent wish cards to doctors, nurses and healthcare workers to show their appreciation.
    This year (2021), we are celebrating our 110th anniversary. Scouting began in 1907 in England and spread out quickly globally. In 1911, the first Scout Group was set up in Hong Kong with 28 Scouts.  Since then, Scouting has grown steadily in Hong Kong. We are proud to say that we are the largest uniformed youth organisation in Hong Kong. It is estimated that one out of every 80 people in Hong Kong are active members of the Scout Movement; and about 45% of the uniformed youth members in Hong Kong are Scouts. We will continue to try our best to make Scouting the movement for young people, and to prepare them to be active and contributing members of Hong Kong, the nation, and the world.

    21/11/2021 - 足本 Full (HKT 08:15 - 08:30)

    21/11/2021 - Joseph Lau, Chief Commissioner of The Scout Association of Hong Kong


    09 - 11


    Joseph Lau, Chief Commissioner of The Scout Association of Hong Kong


    Alex Chui, Chairman of Hong Kong Toilet Association


    Shara Ng, chairman of the Hong Kong Vegan Association


    Lydia Pang, WWF Hong Kong’s Oceans Conservation project manager


    Chole Lai, chairperson of the Conservancy Association Centre for Heritage


    Dr Mona Lam, Executive Director of the Family Planning Association of Hong Kong


    Alex Chung, President of the Hong Kong Information Technology Federation



    Leung Wing-mo, spokesman of the Hong Kong Meteorological Society


    Katharina Reimer, Executive Director, Karen Leung Foundation

    Dr Mona Lam, Executive Director of the Family Planning Association of Hong Kong

    The alarm has been sounded over the decline of Hong Kong’s population, with deaths outnumbering births for the first time since the 1960s.


    Covid-19 was one of the major factors for the dramatic drop in Hong Kong’s fertility rate for the past two years. Weddings were put off in 2020 leading to the lowest annual number of marriages over the past 10 years. Pregnancy plans were held back out of fears for the higher risks of serious complications after infection.  Hong Kong’s Total Fertility Rate (average number of children born to each woman) hit a historic low at 0.87 in 2020, and the downward trend may continue. There is also a trend in the postponement of marriage in Hong Kong, with a rise in the median age of women getting married and the median age at first childbirth.


    The Family Planning Association of Hong Kong (FPAHK) has been monitoring the pattern of family planning through the Survey on Family Planning Knowledge, Attitude and Practice in Hong Kong, which is conducted every 5 years since 1967.

    In the 2017 Survey, couples were asked about their reasons for not having children or having only one child. The most commonly cited reasons were “heavy financial burden”, “heavy parental responsibilities”, “wanting more time and space for personal development” and “lack of living space”.


    Concerning policies conducive to incentivizing childbirths, couples preferred: financial incentives in terms of housing, education, healthcare and children tax allowances; strengthened social parental support including longer paid maternity and paternity leaves, flexible work hours and more quality childcare services; free pre-school education and improvement in education quality.


    There have been many discussions on how to encourage childbirth or boost the fertility rate in Hong Kong. Childbearing is a very individual family decision, with many factors to consider, such as social support, economic status, personal preference, health condition, etc. People’s informed choices should be respected. In 2015 the FPAHK released a TV announcement on public interest titled “How many is enough”. We did not advise people on how many children is enough, instead, we emphasized: “The choice is yours. Plan ahead and plan it well”.  

    Given women’s declining fertility with advancing age, couples are advised to plan their family early and seek help early in case of difficulty getting pregnant. The FPAHK supports these couples by providing pre-pregnancy check-up, subfertility services, sex therapy, coaching and counselling. The government can provide support through sustainable public policies with targeted incentives and family-friendly employment practices in the community to reduce aspiring couples’ barriers to family formation.


    What do our young people think about marriage and childbearing?


    In the FPAHK’s Youth Sexuality Study 2016, youths aged 18-27 were surveyed. Continuing the downward trend over the past two decades, less than half of the youth respondents indicated that they would marry in future, around 30-40% were uncertain. The top reasons for not getting married or being undecided were “unable to find a suitable partner”, “enjoying single life” and “financial inadequacy”. Concerning childbearing, around 50% of them would like to have children, which decreased from about 70% in 2006. “Heavy financial burden”, “enjoying carefree lifestyle without children”, “social environment unsuitable for children’s development” and “dislike children” were major reasons.


    Young people in Hong Kong are increasingly ambivalent about marriage and family formation. Besides the departure from traditional values towards marriage and family, a sense of socio-economic insecurity may be perceived in this highly competitive society.


    Comprehensive sexuality education is a part of all-round education for the youths. It includes not only safer sex, but also dating and intimacy, gender identity, gender-based violence, and a variety of other topics appropriate to the age and needs. Greater emphasis can be put on the cultivation of positive attitudes and values towards interpersonal relationships and love. These are the bases of marriage, family and parenthood. We have to empower our young generation with the life skills of communication, conflict resolution, self-management and critical thinking, so that they can make informed and responsible choices for themselves and their families. The latest Youth Sexuality Study 2021 is underway, we look forward to sharing with you when the results are available.


    I would like to dedicate the song ”Easy” by RubberBand to all the workers promoting and providing services in sexual and reproductive health for the community.


    17/10/2021 - 足本 Full (HKT 08:15 - 08:30)

    17/10/2021 - Dr Mona Lam, Executive Director of the Family Planning Association of Hong Kong

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