To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Sino Group’s ‘Mission Green Top’ programme, 60 Hong Kong students enjoyed a one-day workshop in July on ‘Green Living’ during which they interviewed the Executive Director and Convenor of Sino Group’s Sustainability Committee, Mr Sunny Yeung, and the Principal of Sing Yin Secondary School, Mr Wong Chi-keung. Both speakers shared their insights with the teenagers on how to promote green living.
The rapid depletion of Hong Kong’s natural environment has gone far beyond our ability to remedy the situation. Environmental conservation has notably become a prevailing mission. Apparently, leading a greener life is the way out for humanity amidst the many unfavorable environmental issues our city is facing.
Once a habit, forever a custom
For the last decade, Sino Group has played a significant role in realising green living at large. The ‘Mission Green Top’ Programme is one example which combines promoting urban farming, supporting the less-privileged and engaging the broader community. Greening the roof of Sino Group’s Skyline Tower is not merely putting pots of green to reduce room temperature or creating a relaxing environment for its occupants – though these functions have all been achieved.
As part of the Programme, the Group has invited Hong Chi Association to collaborate running an organic farm on part of the roof, a real canopy in the newly-risen Kowloon East cement jungle. The project allows the intellectually-challenged to grow seasonal produce and sell them to tenants of the Group and the public at various Sino Group premises every month. While monetary gains are wholesomely funded back to the Association for running the farm, the biggest gain is spreading the message of diversity and positivity.
‘Green living is a habit, and an attitude in life. We have to make it our second nature rather than just doing an activity once and then forget about it,’ says Mr. Sunny Yeung, Executive Director and Convenor of Sino Group’s Sustainability Committee.
According to Yeung, such ‘attitude’ is only one aspect of a larger mission seen through the manifold success of the Programme. Other facets range from sustainable efforts in saving the environment, to building a feasible platform for the intellectually-challenged and NGOs alike to become self-affluent, and bridging the neglected with the mainstream society. To him, the whole programme is undoubtedly a living proof of how synergy works to profilerate individual efforts. This is certainly one of the lessons and a reminder for all the student participants and Hongkongers to take part in creating a more sustainable Hong Kong.
Sow Like a Farmer
After visiting the Skyline Tower, the students was given a school tour by Mr. Wong Chi-keung, Principal of Sing Yin Secondary School and the pioneer in building the first green school in Hong Kong.
‘I strongly recommend environmental education as the first educational goal in this school,’ Wong says.
A conservationist himself, Wong creates the best ‘Atmosphere’ for his students to apply green living, an extra ‘A’ that he added to the known 3A-principle of environmental conservation. The School advocates the principles with infrastructures like renewable energy generating mediums, monocrystalline panels and thin film solar panels. The school campus is also mainly powered by its ‘Efficient Energy System’ that emphasises on energy-saving management.
Furthermore, Wong encourages his students to constantly explore green measures by taking up functional posts at school, such as being ‘Environment Ambassadors’. He hopes to witness the seeds he sowed to bear more fruit, and that there would be more funding and curriculum support in environmental education for secondary schools.
Looking at the severe weather changes yearly, we can feel the urgency of the incurable pandemic – global warming. If green living – both the attitude and practice - can help us create a more sustainable city, we should grasp every opportunity to contribute to a sustainable future.
Like Yeung advised us at the start of the workshop, we should “make it a habit and [practise green living] bit by bit, drop by drop.”