During Covid-19, Hong Kong experienced one of the world’s strictest social restrictions and Covid policies, with full-day school and optional masking reintroduced only recently in the Spring of 2023. Elementary school students have been deprived from 3 years of their childhood to run around outdoors and were robbed of opportunities of social interaction, resulting in a general deterioration of mental health, as some educators have shared. Having personally been through Hong Kong’s local school system, I understand the stress society places on academics at a young age and how little opportunities children can get outdoors even without the pandemic. Due to this, my aim is to get elementary school students moving again and show them the joy of outdoor activities through my passion for soccer.
Last year, I reached out to St. Patrick’s School, a local elementary school, and initiated several lessons teaching first and fourth graders how to play soccer. It was an extremely fulfilling experience and I thoroughly enjoyed playing soccer with them, in addition to seeing their happy smiles. This summer, I aim to broaden my focus to every class in the school from first to sixth grade in order to maximize the impact of my initiative. I hope to spread the popularity of soccer throughout the school by introducing this sport to many youngsters who have not had any experience with it, and equip the school with better resources to teach this sport. The school soccer team has always had to train on their basketball court with cones acting as a goal, or had to walk to a nearby park to use the soccer field. I aim to use the CSGC grant to buy several soccer goals so the school would have easier mobility and access to playing soccer both during team practices and PE lessons.
Furthermore, in hopes of leaving a lasting impact and inspiring the children to get outdoors and play sports, I want to leave them with little gifts to remind them of the importance of physical activity. Inspired by Deerfield’s Be Worthy wristbands, I will also use the grant to make wristbands to give out to the children I work with, with an inspirational quote written on it to encourage them to get active.