For successful businessman and award-winning community service contributor Wayne Pui Por Chau, who graduated with a BEng in Computer Science, voluntary work has been an amazing route to making a difference, not only to those he helped, but also to himself and through his example to friends and classmates.
Arriving in Hong Kong as a child immigrant from Mainland China, Wayne faced numerous challenges in settling down in Hong Kong. He could not understand Cantonese. His family had very little money and the school he attended was not prestigious. However, through the support and encouragement of one of his teachers, Wayne started to undertake different types of voluntary service. He found it changed his life. "When I was doing such work, I had lots of opportunity to practice my Cantonese, and slowly this built my confidence."
He proved equally inspiring at HKUST, where he sat in on business classes as well as undertaking his computer science degree, worked part-time, gave tutorials to young children, studied for an English diploma, scrutinized the financial markets daily, and continued with his voluntary activities. "The busier, the better," Wayne said. "I like contributing."
After meeting his wife through voluntary work, their shared interests led them to set up The Outstanding Givers charity organization with other founders. The charity encourages all-round development among young people through voluntary work and social development projects. Wayne is also a co-founder of five other charity organizations, including the Youth Arch Foundation, which supports student awards, and Zhong Hua Construction Foundation, established after the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. Wayne was named a 2010 Hong Kong Spirit Ambassador and recently received a Hong Kong Volunteer Award. He is currently actively involved in over 10 non-profit organizations and charity projects.
Wayne is a firm believer in parent-children voluntary work and has encouraged his daughter to participate in activities along with him. She has also donated half of her laisee money at Chinese New Year and has her own Facebook page with over 11,000 fans. He hopes to promote more such family volunteering in Hong Kong. Other plans for the future include encouraging social development work through social media and helping children in need.
In talking about the mindset to achieve no matter what your initial circumstances are, Wayne said: "Genuinely use your heart and you can do it. Don't worry if the chance is low. If you don't try, you will not succeed. If you do try, at least you have the chance of success."