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"Charity and Society" Subject Talks

This series of talks will look back on the development of TWGHs’ charitable services and examine the politics, healthcare, education, social landscape and unique charitable spirit of Hong Kong in different time periods.

Past Activities

From Chinese to Western Medicine: Development of Healthcare in Hong Kong
Date: 2020/12/5 (Saturday)
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
Description: Tung Wah Hospital was founded in 1870 to provide free Chinese medical treatment to the people. Yet, Hong Kong government officials were sceptical of the effectiveness of Chinese medical treatment. To make things worse, during the plague of Hong Kong in 1894, the hospital was unable to diagnose patients infected with the plague in time. As a result, the Hong Kong government assigned a Chinese practitioner of western medicine to Tung Wah Hospital. The doctor offered western medical treatment to patients and western medicine began to develop in Tung Wah Hospital. After the Second World War, western medicine was mainly used to treat patients in Tung Wah Hospital. This talk examines the development of western medicine in Hong Kong through the shift of medical treatment in Tung Wah.
Fundraising Initiatives, Popular Culture and Public Engagement
Date: 2020/11/28 (Saturday)
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
Venue: Hong Kong Central Library (Lecture Theatre)
Description: A successful non-government charitable organisation does not only rely on the enthusiasm and benevolence of prominent members of society; support from the general public is also crucial. As the saying goes: “Money or effort, give what you can.” This idea has always been important in Hong Kong’s charity industry. Throughout the years, Hong Kong people have contributed to charity in ways that they could: some donated money, other helped raise funds. Apart from concern for the needy, the contribution also shows a sense of belonging to society. This talk examines Hong Kong people’s participation in charity, with a focus on how the grassroots have taken up a more active role since the 1970s. Meanwhile, the mass media and popular culture were important carriers responsible for disseminating information about charity.
Education Services of Tung Wah and Social Development (Online Talk)
Date: 2020/11/1 (Sunday)
Time: 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Description: In the 150 years since its founding, Tung Wah has offered free medical services and disaster relief to the people of Hong Kong, while education has also been one of its key services. More than a century ago, Tung Wah had already established free schools for impoverished children, so they could receive an education and contribute to society when they grew up. Tung Wah’s education services have kept abreast of the times: from the free schools in the late 19th century and free schools for girls in the early 20th century to the kindergartens, primary schools, secondary schools and special schools established after the Second World War as well as tertiary institutes in recent years to meet the needs of society. This talk will discuss in detail on Tung Wah’s work in education as well as its correlation with Hong Kong’s social, economic and urban development.
Tung Wah and Hong Kong Society during the Japanese Occupation of Hong Kong
Date: 2020/10/24 (Saturday)
Time: 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
Venue: Hong Kong Central Library (Lecture Theatre)
Description: In December 1941, Japan invaded Hong Kong. Then Hong Kong governor Sir Mark Aitchison Young surrendered to the Japanese forces on Christmas Day, and the darkest period in Hong Kong’s modern history began. During this time, the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals stood by the people of Hong Kong, upholding its mission of providing emergency relief for those in need. While Tung Wah continued to provide services, Hong Kong people supported Tung Wah’s fundraising initiatives when it was in serious financial crisis. This talk will narrate how Tung Wah pulled through this tumultuous time.