Joint CNY Virtual Party
Group visits and mass gatherings are among the most cherished Chinese New Year (CNY) traditions. Sadly, this year‘s Lunar New Year celebrations coincided with a tightening of social distancing measures and in person events brought on by the 5th wave of the pandemic. Although physical gatherings have been discontinued, the Order of Malta Hong Kong Association still brought online cheer and festivities to its communities on 13 February. Sophie Mensdorff-Pouilly, Hospitaller of the Hong Kong Association of the Order of Malta, led the Members, Project Leaders and Volunteers in organising a bilingual, activity-packed virtual Chinese New Year Party for low- income families, young people with disabilities and Special Education Need (SEN) students.
Over 100 participants of different nationalities and backgrounds joined the Party that was warmly kick-started by Sophie’s welcome speech and auspicious greetings. An animated CNY card, created specially for the occasion, celebrated memorable 2021 events with our four projects: the Flying Young Program and Computer Club, the No Limits Social Club, the Lok Yi School Project and the Flying Seniors.
Master of Ceremonies for the day, Dylan Kwok, followed with a very exciting program that delighted the children. First in line were our young Volunteers, Hedia and Iriel Wan, who presented an entertaining piece on the origins of Chinese New Year. This was followed by a video on some traditional CNY folktales.
The highlight of the party were the CNY related quizzes and riddles organized by Volunteers Alex Berry and Yuki Yasukagawa. The children lost no time in shouting out their answers, often even before the questions were completed. Everyone went on to sing the famous Chinese New Year song “Gong ´Xi, Gong ´Xi”, broken down into segments with explanation and translation for the benefit of the non-Chinese speakers. The party ended on a high note with a dance segment prepared by volunteer, Hugo Wong, which all enthusiastically danced and sang along to.
Sophie said, “Despite some internet delays and technical hiccups, we saw everyone having so much fun in watching the videos and playing the games. We are looking to organise smaller group online events which will allow for closer interaction in times of strict social distancing measures.”