Volunteering Made as Easy as 1-2-3 | Rebekah Yong, Swire Trust Go-Givers of 2022
Together with Time Auction, the Swire Trust Go-Givers Program encourages skilled volunteers for Swire Trust NGO partners from 2020 to 2022. 10 outstanding volunteers will be selected annually as the “Swire Trust Go-Givers of the Year” with special rewards & recognition. Meet our 10 Go-Givers of 2022!
Would you be brave enough to pause your life for volunteering? Rebekah Yong was. Prior to studying at one of Hong Kong’s two prestigious medical schools, Rebekah made an extraordinary decision to take a year off. And she spent that year meaningfully - volunteering.
Taking 1 small step...
Before making a full-time commitment to pro-bono work, Rebekah already had ample experience in volunteering. From visiting elderly homes to teaching children English, from cleaning animal shelters to keeping the library tidy, Rebekah was no stranger to hands-on volunteering. However, as social distancing measures during the pandemic suspended these in-person opportunities, Rebekah turned to volunteer work that could be done remotely.
Through social media, Rebekah discovered Time Auction’s volunteering matching platform and found herself a fitting opportunity: volunteering as an English marketing copywriter at Kids4Kids.
…just 2 give…
In this position, Rebekah was responsible for creating engaging and interactive content for the NGO’s online channels, so that they could effectively inform and connect with their target groups, such as service users and potential donors. From the initial brainstorm to the final review, she worked closely with the NGO’s communications team to discuss what events to promote or what updates to share.
For Rebekah, it wasn’t difficult to make sure that the content she produced aligned with the NGO’s vision of inspiring youth to believe in themselves and to realize their full potential as she personally resonates with their worthy mission. Through facilitating self-empowerment in underprivileged or marginalized young adults, Kids4Kids hopes to let youth know that they are never too young to make a difference and that they also have the power to change the world into a better place.
…3 cheers for…
Just like the youth whom she was empowering, Rebekah also felt self-empowered as she realized that she, too, had the ability to lend a helping hand. Indeed, “Rebekah was a responsible and helpful volunteer at Kids4Kids, and did a truly great job with us during her volunteering period,” commented Emily Lai, the Senior Program Officer at Kids4Kids. “Her care in detail and proactive and humble attitude made her understand well and comprehensively the Kids4Kids values, programs, and events.”
Utilizing her English language skills and social awareness of Hong Kong’s teenagers, Rebekah amazed the NGO by going above and beyond their expectations. Emily shared that “Rebekah was good at using her creativity to create nice marketing designs, and inspired the team with many new marketing and event ideas… Her unique point of view and idea sharing brought a surprise to the team which gave birth to a lot of new ideas in our marketing and event planning and designs.”
The outcome of this volunteer work was not only reflected in the updated web pages and social media posts, but also in the development of positive personality traits and professional skills for Rebekah. Being tasked with creating promotional materials, Rebekah has become much more proactive in constantly improving her work and much more confident when collaborating with others. Over a short period of three months, her personal growth has been so significant that, despite the mounting workload from university, she will continue working with Kids4Kids until the end of the year.
“If I can testify to the growth in confidence and the skills that are being [gained] passively just through volunteering with this organization, then, essentially, how much more could be gained by the children and youths that are targeted in particular by their (Kids4Kids) workshops and programs?”
In addition, valuable interpersonal connections have been built between Rebekah and the staff at Kids4Kids. When the pandemic restrictions eased, Rebekah shifted from working at home to working at the office, which she described to have a pleasing family-like atmosphere with helpful colleagues. “I volunteered for quite a lot of hours,” Rebekah recounted, “because, even though they are quite flexible, I found that, since I had the time and since the environment was good, I would tend to go into the office more anyway.”
The collaboration between Rebekah and Kids4Kids must have been so enjoyable that, Kids4Kids not only offered Rebekah a paid part-time job, but they also nominated Rebekah, their “friendly, valued and passionate teammate,” as a Swire Trust Go-Givers of the Year. When invited to share her thoughts on being an awardee, Rebekah did not talk about herself but instead focused on her colleagues as their nomination “does go to show the kind of people that I work with: that they see and appreciate the work of others.”
Indeed, the efforts and skills of volunteers are always appreciated. Are you ready to share yours?
Thank you so much to Rebekah for contributing 150 volunteer hours & beyond at Kids4Kids!
To see details of the Swire Trust Go-Givers Program and support their NGO partners, head over to Time Auction website.
Written by Margaret Ng, Volunteer Copywriter