Youth Development & Poverty Alleviation
Cheering on the young
Tsz-kei: “I got better and better during my days at CLAP@JC…I knew I couldn’t afford to miss another chance.”
From shirking life challenges to bravely embracing them, Tsz-kei has been through years of ups and downs. “I was a NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) for a while,” she says. “I dropped out of school in Form 4. Though I rather enjoyed learning, I could not handle the huge pressure of the DSE. I only wanted to escape.” She spent most of her time at home and struggled to identify a way forward despite having tried multiple part-time jobs.
That was until a social worker introduced her to CLAP@JC. “At first I didn’t want to join,” says Tsz-kei. “But the social worker was very patient with me and I became interested in CLAP@JC’s guitar and makeup classes.” The makeup course rekindled Tsz-kei’s eagerness to learn and she met an encouraging tutor.
“I got better and better during my days at CLAP@JC…I knew I couldn’t afford to miss another chance,” says Tsz-kei. “That’s why I gathered the courage and volunteered to be her apprentice.” Her tutor, who is a bridal makeup artist, took Tsz-kei on different assignments to build up her makeup and communication skills. Tsz-kei worked on what she was passionate about, restoring her sense of purpose and energy. She even broke the bad habit of being late. Before long, she became a professional makeup artist and set up her own studio.
Companionship and encouragement are key to youth development. CLAP@JC was initiated by The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust in 2015. As Hong Kong’s first cross-sectoral support platform on Career and Life Development (CLD), it strives to bring together the education, business, and community sectors to facilitate the transition from school to work for young people. Building on the experience gained, CLAP@JC has benchmarked with global CLD-driven practices, and is en route to formulating a localised framework - “Hong Kong Benchmarks for Career and Life Development”, which will be implemented in one-third of Hong Kong secondary schools. In the community, CLD-driven intervention will be promoted in over 100 mainstream youth services units.