As the motto of the Club is to promote the status of women, services targeted for women have therefore remained as our focal point throughout the years. The following are highlights of several of such projects:
Facing up to future challenges - Harmony House
The target group was 50 women survivors of domestic violence who once stayed in the shelter provided by Harmony House. The project aimed to help the battered women integrate themselves into the society again through rebuilding their confidence and self-esteem. Such therapeutic programmes took the form of workshop on stress management, training on communications skills and networking techniques.
Alternatives to violence project (AV) -HK Family Welfare Society
AVP is a concept and means to reduce the level of violebnce at home by preventing such acts from happening. We believe the best solution to handle violence is to make people understand that they do not need to use violence to deal with anger and conflict. The workshop facilitated the participants to draw on the life experiences of others as learning resources which help to deal constructively with one’s anger and frustration and adversities in our lives.
Radio talk - show and phone-in programme
Our Club started an award-winning radio education programme in 1996 which has kept running on a bi-annual basis since then. Focusing on issues of special concern to modern women, the talk-show and phone-in program had met with over-whelming response not only from audience in Hong Kong but also from Southern China. Professionals within the club and external experts were lined up to share their views with the audience and to provide advice on topics including marriage problem, self-improvement, women’s health, child raising and finance. This project was awarded a Social Service Award from the 2001 Zonta International 11th District Conference.
Partnership with Industrial Relations Institute
On May 1, 2010, President Susan attended a story-telling concert 「勞動節中港女工說唱故事音樂會」organized by the Industrial Relations Institute, one of our Social Services partners. During 2007-2009, the Zonta Club of Victoria collaberated with IRI in subsidizing women from low income families from the Shum Shui Po district「深水埗低收入家庭支援發展計劃」 in a house cleaning project for the elderly in that area. The May Day concert was fun and enjoyable for both performers and audience.
Women on Stage
“Women on Stage” is another project we partnered with Hong Kong Family Welfare Society targeted to enhance the emotional wellbeing for underprivileged women; such as victims of spouse abuse, single mothers, women with family problems, low skills workers, new arrivals and those from the grass root with limited resources. It is a full year project starting in August 2010.
The emotional needs for this group of women are often being neglected. They do not know how and have the channel to recuperate their mental health. They are in need of support for more exposure and recognition to raise their self-esteem and as a result create a more positive family relationship. The project is to facilitate the participants to voice out their suppressed feelings, rebuild their self confidence, internal peace and sense of achievement through training and engaging women targets in performing or being the participants to sharing stories in the “Playback Theatre” and also through various forms of Art Training.
Girls with Dream
In August 2011, the Club has obtained fundings from Li Ka Shing Foundation's Love Ideas Love Hong Kong programme to launch an empowerment project for adolescent girls who are at risk of participating in compensated dating. Called "Girls with Dreams", this projected will be rolled by by Zonta Club of Victoria in partnership with Hong Kong Family Society around October 2011. More details to be provided.
“Soup Action with Love” 「吾湯吾水‧暖在心頭」
In an effort to expand our service partnerships, Zonta Club of Victoria reached out to the Sham Shui Po Network Support Team of Salvation Army in offering the “Soup Action with Love” project, an extension of successful elements of a 2-year project funded under the Community Investment and Inclusion Fund in 2009. The objective of the “Soup Action with Love” is manifold. It aims to show love and care by means of providing soup to the elderly and deprived families in the Sham Shui Po area. It also aims to leverage the unique strengths of women in area to develop a systematic community support network, so that the needs of these families will not be forgotten. In addition, university students from HKUST are recruited as volunteers to support the “Little Master” training program (「小當家訓練」). The university students act as mentors of the children in these families, providing help and support so that these children, aged 7 – 13, may develop independence and self-care ability, alleviating the burden to their families. Health talks are also organized for women volunteers to enhance their knowledge in health living which they can share with the deprived families during the soup visits.
The project commenced in May 2013 and as of December 2013, 252 visitations were made, involving 40 women volunteers and their family members, and benefiting 42 elderly, low-income and single-parent households. Activities were also organized to bolster the sense of community, including visits to Noah’s Ark, the Wetland Park and Disneyland.
“Understanding and Preventing Domestic Violence against Women” 「紫紅計劃 : 預防家暴社區藝術起動」
“Understanding and Preventing Domestic Violence against Women” is another one-year project under “Zonta Says No” campaign which is organized by the Centre for Community Cultural Development, funded by the Zonta Club of Victoria, and has just commenced in April 2014. This is an innovative project focused on empowering women to speak out against violence and approaches the topic of domestic violence in a fresh new way, blending drama, music, and art therapy techniques to help women explore how violence affects the entire family unit. A group of 25 women will be recruited to participate in a three-part series to watch the Domestic Violence Trilogy, documentaries produced by Ms Kuo Shiao-yun, a Taiwanese film-maker, which were recently shown at the 2013 Chinese Documentary Festival in Hong Kong. Each part of the trilogy is filmed from a different perspective, that of the victim, the victimizer, and the children who grow up in violence. Following each screening, therapists will work with the women to examine different facets of domestic violence, including: the use of playback theatre as a platform to encourage self-expression about their personal experiences, analyzing their relationship with their spouse through art therapy, and processing how violence affects children through the use of music. At the end of this three-part series, the participants will bring their experience back to other women in the community by organizing an educational workshop that incorporates what they learn. This program will be replicated at 12 different NGOs, with the aim of benefitting at least 300 vulnerable women in the Hong Kong community.