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Igniting Passions, Navigating Life’s Dreams and Goals - Chan Sze-ting
Igniting Passions, Navigating Life’s Dreams and Goals - Chan Sze-ting
Chan Sze Ting
Chan Sze Ting
Participant of “CLAP for Youth @ JC”

Once both out of school and out of work – a status known as “non-engaged”, Chan Sze-ting (Ting) seemed somewhat ill-at-ease when faced with visiting strangers. Nevertheless, once she got past her initial shyness, Ting’s talkative and bright personality emerged, with her infectious laughter endearing her to even first-time acquaintances.

Now 21 and brimming with positivity, Ting, like many youths of her generation, used to be full of questions about the future. Once lost and aimless, she spent half a year drifting through life until she met her social worker Eva a year ago. It was Eva who introduced Ting to “CLAP for Youth @ JC” – a programme that has helped Ting discover new interests and a path through life. While Ting may not have sensed the change in herself this past year, Eva has witnessed the blossoming of a youth full of potential.

Adrift and Rudderless

In her junior secondary years, Ting was introverted and her studies were mediocre. With her favorite subject – home economy – excluded from the senior secondary curriculum, Ting lost any remaining interest in school. “I had no interest in the subjects and in studying, and quite naturally my results suffered.” Three years ago she took and failed the HKDSE, yet luckily she took the blunder in stride.

Ting knew that books were not for her, so rather than fulfilling others’ expectations of her and furthering her studies, she chose to work. For two years, she did a number of odd jobs, including being a shopkeeper for different retailers in order to make a living. “I had never felt so lost and aimless”, Ting explained. All throughout her childhood and teenage years, her family adopted a hands-free attitude, but what Ting actually wanted was much-needed guidance.

Ting’s brother was one of the “hidden youth” who preferred staying at home much like a recluse. It was during a home visit for Ting’s brother that Eva, a social worker, met Ting, who was “non-engaged” at the time. Later, Eva became Ting’s “Life Navigator”. “When we first met, Ting’s favorite pet phrases were ‘who cares’ and ‘whatever you like’, but she was actually only temporarily lost”, Eva explained. “I was hopeful that she could try out different experiences and unleash her potential.” Eva introduced Ting to the “Systematic Interest, Career and Life Adventure Planning Programme” under “CLAP for Youth @ JC”, hoping it would expand her horizons.

Today, Ting shows a keen passion for leatherwork and hopes to establish her own leather goods brand.
Ting hopes to inspire other youths through her own experiences; to show them that they need to trust their instincts and tread their own path no matter the hurdles.
Breaking out of existing frames to choose one’s life plans

The Programme affords opportunities to experience over a dozen kinds of interests, including pet grooming and pottery. Among them, leather-working is Ting’s favorite and one in which she is the most accomplished. To avoid disturbing her family’s sleep, there are times when Ting works with leather in the kitchen under dim lighting in the middle of the night. She looks forward to setting up her own leather goods brand; though there remains a way to go before she can set up her own business. “I need to reach a certain level first – I won’t sell my goods until I’m confident with my craftsmanship.” This goes to show that Ting has not just developed great skills but a sense of responsibility.

“CLAP for Youth @ JC”, initiated by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, aims to help students and non-engaged youths plan for their futures; explore and identify their career interests, and find a direction in life. Just as Eva has said: “Each youth has his or her own unique attributes”, and Ting also hopes to inspire other youths through her own experiences; to show them that they need to trust their instincts and tread their own paths no matter the hurdles. Inspired by Eva’s passion in youth services, Ting hopes to one day become a social worker.

Planning begins with trying, and Ting hopes that with dreams and hard work she will one day reach her goal.
Eva, Ting’s “Life Navigator”, has witnessed the blossoming of a youth full of potential.

“No matter how tortuous and tiring it might be, with a positive attitude I trust I will persevere – and eventually find success!” Planning begins with trying, and Ting hopes that with dreams and hard work, she will one day reach her goal.

Contact one of the five “CLAP for Youth @ JC” District Service Teams
  • HK & Outlying Islands: Tel: 2559 6310
  • Kowloon East: Tel: 3692 4470
  • Kowloon West: Tel: 3580 0110
  • New Territories East: Tel: 2420 3522
  • New Territories West: Tel: 3956 4433
Website: https://www.clapforyouth.org.hk/
Facebook: www.facebook.com/CLAPforYouthatJC/

Through the heartwarming stories, we salute remarkable individuals and inspire the community with their positive values.

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