2016 - 2017 A Shinning Star
Our theme project this year was called “A Shining Star” in which we aimed to serve teenagers afflicted with autism or mental retardation. In fact, more than 60-70% of children who are suffering from mental retardation also suffer from autism. We had organised activities for these teenagers to train their communication and muscle controlling skills.
We started the project by holding different interactive workshops for our service targets. During the project our Leos were teamed up with the service targets so at every session the same Leo was attached to the same participant so as to provide ample opportunities for them to bond.
To encourage our service targets to express their gratitude and good wishes towards their caretakers and the community, we had arranged for them to make handcrafts and cards to be dedicated to the caretakers and the community at large. We hoped to let our service targets know that they were capable of making contributions instead of merely receiving assistance passively.
We had also organised a photography competition which was open to the public in order to arouse public awareness in autism and to debunk widely-held misconceptions in relation to this condition. We launched the competition on facebook. Hundreds of facebook-users were attracted to participate in this competition. Participants were required to put themselves into the shoes of autistic teenagers and to take a photograph by looking at the surrounding environment in the eyes of an autistic person. We selected three winners based on judging criterias including adherence to theme and concept. We had a prize presentation ceremony at our June Regular Meeting.
We have stepped out of our comfort zone and made a lot of new attempts in the year 2016-2017 such as combining activities for our service targets with our fundraising project and organising a photography competition which was open to the public, involving not only the Lions and Leos community but also the general public in Hong Kong. Through organising all these activities in the year 2016-2017, we hoped to convey the message of empowerment to the service targets and the general public, and to let people know that autistic teenagers are capable of contributing to the larger community instead of merely receiving assistance passively.