#Hashtag Hong Kong



    Listen to #Hashtag Hong Kong every Sunday morning at 8.15

    Focussing on issues affecting civil society, we'll hear from representatives of NGOs, associations, statutory bodies, and non-profit groups.

    (Sundays 8.15am - 8.25am)



    Raymond Wong, General Manager, SLCO Community Resources

    The United Nations General Assembly has proclaimed September 23rd as the International Day of Sign Languages, to raise awareness about sign languages and the important role they play in the full realization of human rights for all deaf people. The theme for 2023 is “A World Where Deaf People Everywhere Can Sign Anywhere!”. Today, let's take a look at how far we are from this grand vision, shall we? 
    There are over 300 different sign languages used by 70 million deaf people around the world. These sign languages are all fully-fledged natural languages, structurally distinct from the spoken languages of the communities in which they arise. Here in Hong Kong, there are around 6,000 people using Hong Kong Sign Language, which has its own grammar and vocabulary, distinct from spoken Chinese and English. 
    In recent years, we have seen great strides in the recognition and development of sign languages worldwide. More countries are legally recognizing their national sign languages, which empowers deaf communities and affirms their linguistic identity. 
    Comparatively, we still have a long road ahead here in Hong Kong, but we are still glad to see that sign language had an increasing acceptance and prevalence in Hong Kong over the past decade. Sign language interpretation is now available in government public announcements. We now have news programmes with sign language every day on television. Sign interpreter training programs at organizations and the university are helping to professionalize sign language interpretation services. Our organization is also running a sign bilingual and co-enrolment education programme to make sign language instruction available within mainstream education, to improve educational outcomes for both deaf and hearing children when they learn together. 
    While progress has been made, continued effort is still needed to make sign language fully accessible in schools, government services and the broader community. Policies have to be refined, resources have to be sought after, but most importantly, you can take part in this endeavour. 
    Here at SLCO Community Resources, we advocate “sign language for all”, which means that everyone, regardless of their hearing ability, can benefit from learning and using sign language. We build projects and services around these benefits to bring greater good to society as a whole. So what benefits are there?
    First and foremost, learning sign language allows deaf and hearing people to communicate directly. This fosters greater inclusion in social situations, schools, workplaces and society at large. 
    Beyond the deaf community, sign language also offers benefits for other groups with special communication needs. For children with autism or other developmental disabilities, sign language provides them a way to communicate wants and needs through simple signs and gestural expressions. Developing sign language skills can also reduce frustration and improve social interaction and educational outcomes for these children.
    As a vibrant and engaging visual language, sign language is effective in visualizing abstract concepts to enhance babies' early language and cognitive development. An Early exposure to sign language even allows hearing babies to communicate their needs and desires before they can speak. 
    Sign language also has advantages for the elderly. It can be used as effective visual cues during communication with seniors suffering from ageing hearing loss. Signing engages visuospatial areas of the brain, providing cognitive stimulation to seniors. Studies have even shown that learning and using sign language delays the onset of neurodegenerative diseases like dementia. Sign language can even help to overcome situational barriers, such as in loud environments or situations where speaking is difficult.
    Overall, embracing and expanding sign language use promotes inclusion, accessibility, and quality of life for people across the spectrum of age and ability. Nowadays when diversity and inclusiveness are often emphasized, we should seriously rethink whether verbal communication is the only acceptable norm. Why not open ourselves to new modes of communication? Signing is not bound to those who cannot hear, signing is for everyone.  
    We can each take small steps to promote the use of sign language in Hong Kong. We can learn the very basics through one of the many online resources. We can request sign language classes or workshops at our workplace, school, or community centre. Arrange sign interpretation services for deaf participants in events and classes. Or just simply greet someone with sign language as we go about our day. With everyone taking a step forward, we are not that far away from building a community where all can communicate, all can thrive, and all belong.
    Lastly, let me teach you a simple sign to start with. Hold your thumb up, and dip the tip of your thumb up and down towards someone that you would like to thank. This is “Thank You” in Hong Kong Sign Language. Thank you for listening, and I bring you the song “What’s Going On” by Marvin Gaye. I wish you all a lovely and peaceful day.

    24/09/2023 - 足本 Full (HKT 08:15 - 08:30)

    24/09/2023 - Raymond Wong, General Manager, SLCO Community Resources


    07 - 09


    Raymond Wong, General Manager, SLCO Community Resources


    Maggie Lee, Executive Director of Hong Kong Alzheimer's Disease Association


    Vincent Ng, Executive Director of Suicide Prevention Services


    Marine Thomas, Senior Conservation program Manager at Nature Conservancy Hong Kong


    Joyce Chan , a volunteer at House of Joy and Mercy


    Kylie Lai, Programme Officer, CarbonCare InnoLab


    Ivan Lam, manager of Hong Kong PHAB Association


    Stephanie Ng, founder of Body Banter


    Amanda Lau, board governor of Music Children Foundation


    Cindy Chau, Project Executive, Chu Kong Plan

    Written by Larra Chung, the Vice- Chairperson (internal) & read by Connie Wong, Vice-chairperson (external) of Hong Kong Parkinson’s Disease Association, both are Parkinson’s disease patients.

    I am a Parkinson's disease patient. I want to share with you my story, a story of LIGHT and HOPE !

    I have been a Parkinson's patient for 15 years since 2008. After being diagnosed, I was so desperate and became completely lost in my life. I didn’t know what to do and how would my life be in the future? Everything was turned into a mess beyond my imagination. Luckily, when I did some research on it, I noticed The Hong Kong Society for Rehabilitation (CRN), a non-profit organization which provides a  variety of activities, including the Harmonica Class which I later joined. However, I wanted to learn more as I was still young and eager to learn! That’s how I heard about The Hong Kong Parkinson’s Disease Association in my life for the first time!

    Hong Kong Parkinson’s Disease Association (HKPDA)  was registered as a non-profit organization in 1998 and subsequently changed from Society to Company registration in 2010. Currently, there are more than 1,500 members. HKPDA gives support and encouragement amongst other patients in our life-long journey to fight against and cope with the disease. It organizes a wide variety of activities to encourage patients to face the disease through adopting a positive attitude.  That's why I’m here today!

    Parkinson's disease is a chronic brain degenerative disease caused by the deterioration of a part of the brain called the substantia nigra, which fails to produce sufficient dopamine. "Dopamine" is an essential chemical substance responsible for the transmission of nerve messages that controls the function of our body. In the past, this disease mostly occurred in the elderly around sixty years old or above. However, some patients may also develop such disease much earlier, even before forty. When I was in my 50’s, I was diagnosed and confirmed with the disease. I kept asking myself repeatedly. Why me? Why at such a young age? It must have been a mistake, it should not be me ! The process of acceptance is so painful and difficult. Parkinson's Disease doesn't threaten your life, but turning it into a life without dignity!


    In our daily life, for patients with Parkinson's disease, we face lots of difficulties when the medicine has not started taking effect yet as our physical performances are greatly affected by the effectiveness of the medicine. All these difficulties lead us to wonder if it is a joke or a test from God? Things or tasks that used to be easy for us can become such a huge challenge. For example, when we take the MTR, if the medicine fails to take effect, even if you stand close to the door of the train, you can barely walk or even not be able to move your legs to get on the train. It is just a small step to normal people, but to us, it is a big obstacle and challenge. It's just too hard to explain what exactly we are facing every single day.


    With all the side effects caused by the medicine, our basic abilities are greatly limited. Hence, we need a lot of assistance throughout our daily routine. Besides, with the lack of dopamine, we are always emotional as our temper can be easily affected, which causes us to put our temper on the ones who take care of us.  They have to bear all kinds of mental stress and helplessness we induce, and accept all major or minor requests, even the unreasonable ones. They usually keep it to themselves hence leading to a higher stress level. As the solution of curing Parkinson is still under research, this is a lifelong battle for both of us. To walk through our Parkinson's road together, let’s be more considerate.


    I wish that every Parkinson’s patient can plan his own future conscientiously, and live a fulfilling life! I hope to take initiatives to fight for and safeguard the reasonable rights and interests for our patients and their carers.  Disability is not limited to the visible ones, but also the invisible ones, so just show your love and care, a kind gesture can always reach a wound that only compassion can heal. In addition, we don't care whether your life is long or short, but whether you have lived a wonderful and rewarding life! Live in the moment.

    I sincerely wish that I can continue to serve Parkinson's patients and bring hope to those who are less unfortunate and under-privileged in the society!


    09/04/2023 - 足本 Full (HKT 08:15 - 08:30)

    09/04/2023 - Written by Larra Chung, the Vice- Chairperson (internal) & read by Connie Wong, Vice-chairperson (external) of Hong Kong Parkinson’s Disease Association, both a