Tzu Chi Environmental Action Center to Open on November 20 | Taiwan News

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Old village school building after green restoration

Extends Kind-hearted Minds First Educational Legacy

HONG KONG SAR – Media OutReach – November 18, 2021 – The Buddhist Relief Foundation Tzu Chi Hong Kong Ltd. (hereinafter “Tzu Chi Hong Kong”) announced today that the Tzu Chi Environmental Action Center (“Action Center”) located at 5 Che Kung Miu Road will open its doors free of charge to the public from November. 20 after green restoration of its original building. The Action Center’s environmental programs, exhibitions and related expenses are funded by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust. Establishing “Common Understanding, Common Consensus, Collective Action” as its core values, the Action Center aims to promote public awareness of environmental protection that would lead to positive behavior changes, and hopefully, Through the force of collective action to implement environmental protection for the body – the spirit-earth connection, our planet and our home could be protected by fighting climate change.

By the 1950s, Hong Kong’s economy had not yet taken off, and the dropout rate among children in rural areas was high. A free Buddhist school was opened in 1954 on the site of the current Action Center to provide basic education to children living in the neighborhood, thanks to a generous donation from overseas Chinese Boon Haw AW and Boon Par AW. In 1982, school operator Chi Hong Ching Yuen moved the then elementary school to a new campus in Yuen Chau Kok, Shatin. After that, the premises were converted into Chi Hong Kindergarten which continued to serve the community until the year 2000. Chi Hong Ching Yuen then donated the premises to Tzu Chi Hong Kong for charity afterwards. that the school building had been left vacant for two years. As the structure itself is a typical village school built with local materials, much of it was in disrepair after six decades of rains and winds. So, a large-scale restoration project took place in 2019 to strengthen all of its architecture, preparing it for the next phase of travel.

Tzu Chi Hong Kong CEO Chung Ling SZE said, “Despite the moderate size of this action center, our attentions throughout the restoration process can be easily seen anywhere. We follow the 7R rule closely – we RESPECT everything, both animate and inanimate; REPAIR things to make them as durable as possible; RECYCLE all resources in a systematic way; REFUSE excessive consumption and packaging; encourage REDUCTION at the source; REUSE whenever possible; and RETHINK the importance of the symbiosis between humans and the Earth and promote it – making the Action Center an ideal place for eco-education for the public to engage in experiential learning on the protection of the Earth. environment through “common understanding, common consensus, collective action”. I would also like to express our sincere gratitude to the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust for their donation to support the Action Center’s environmental programs, exhibitions and related expenses. ”

This green restoration project, articulated around the fundamental concept of “Biophilic Design” is intended to bring visitors closer to nature. The building uses daylight and natural ventilation, so as to connect the exterior landscape with the interior. Project architect Corrin CHAN said, “Tzu Chi Hong Kong has long been committed to promoting environmental protection in Hong Kong, advocating ‘purification at the source’ and emphasizing on the current practice of environmental protection. This explains why ecological renovation appears to be the highest option. Such a transformation established dialogues between then and now, using green architecture as a means of expressing the Action Centre’s goal of promoting environmental protection. “

True to the spirit of the 7Rs, all restoration work has been carried out with the use of environmentally friendly building materials, including fast growing eco-bamboo which has been used as an alternative to wood on flooring, wall finishes, doors, window frames, window sills, exterior fences, and staircase with handrails; environmentally friendly paints with low VOC (volatile organic compound) content applied to the exterior and interior of the building; and Palm Eco Board. Other materials are: “Da Ai Eco Plastic Wood” made from PET bottles and PE milk bottles; “Ji Si Eco Interlocking Bricks” made from the PE coating of discarded paper containers; as well as DIY yellow sand bricks handmade by volunteers. Additionally, all wall and floor tiles on the site were donated by a local developer who kept excess materials from other construction projects in the warehouse, in order to REDUCE at the source.

Solar panels installed at the top of the building can cover all the electricity demand needed for the structure. In order to achieve carbon neutrality, excess electricity can be injected into the central electricity grid. The rainwater harvesting system provides water resources for irrigation and partly for daily cleaning.

Two exhibitions, both echoing environmental concerns, will be simultaneously staged in the Action Center. The inaugural exhibition Common understanding Common consensus Collective action staged at “The Planet Room”, presents the catastrophic footprint on the earth caused by wind disasters, floods, water pollution, wildfires and human behavior through a variety of installations and of exhibitions, allowing visitors to discover and reflect on the symbiotic relationship between human beings and the Earth, thus awakening them to induce individual habitual changes so that they can act for the environmental cause. Carbon musings designed by artist Chris CHEUNG (h0nh1m) is an interactive ink art installation recording the astonishing annual increase in carbon dioxide content in the atmosphere through analysis of climate change data during over the past 63 years.

“Eco Jockey Club Co-Creation Space” presents a thematic exhibition A breeze from the woods implement the principles of the Action Center. In the exhibition, cabinetmaker artist Che LAM presents the concept of ocean conservation through 108 handcrafted wooden sharks of various sizes. Other works include wooden stools and wooden radios illustrating endless possibilities in wood remodeling.

Other spaces worth visiting from the Action Center include the “Da Ai Technology Room” showcasing the achievements of using technology in recycled materials; “Ethical Eating Room”, offering an overview of vegetarian culinary culture and offering vegetarian cooking classes; and “Jing Si Humanistic Culture Room” promoting kindness and love to purify the soul. The Action Center takes care of recycling and sorting every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, to encourage volunteers and visitors to practice environmental protection in person. Yuk Lin CHOW, a volunteer veteran of Tzu Chi Hong Kong, said, “We are very fortunate to have taken a more difficult route in restoring the locals. Unlike demolition and reconstruction, not only restoration can preserve the structure but also the original intention. of the building at the time of construction, that is, to pursue the original intention of providing education. “. Through exhibitions and other activities, we strive to educate the public about the benefits of environmental protection and reduce the unnecessary consumption of materials, thus enabling the harmonious coexistence between mankind. and the Earth’s resources. “

Tzu Chi Environmental Action Center

Address

:

5 Che Kung Miu Street, Tai Wai

Opening hours

:

10h00-12h30 and 13h30-17h00 Mondays, Wednesdays

to Sunday (Closed Tuesdays and public holidays)

Telephone

:

2337 0158

Costs

:

Free entry

* To avoid overcrowding, visitors are advised to register on the official Action Center website before visiting. Walk-in visits will be subject to availability.

Website

:

www.tzuchieac.org.hk

About Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation HK Ltd.

Founded in 1993, the Buddhist Relief Compassion Foundation Tzu Chi Hong Kong Ltd. is a non-profit charitable organization championing the spirit of great goodness with the elements of “Sincerity, Integrity, Faith and Truth” and “Unconditional Benevolence.” Compassion “for more than two decades. In addition to actively promoting charitable work, such as regular visits to hospitals, homes for the blind, nursing homes, the mentally well, and schools for children with physical disabilities, Tzu Chi Hong Kong also engages in other case-based charities, including personal care services, homeless visits, emergency relief, and free health checks. In addition, the Hong Kong chapter is committed to promoting the humanistic culture of Tzu Chi, advocating the teaching of Jing Si Aphorisms, organizing parent-child growth classes for children and providing financial assistance to disadvantaged students.

In November 2009, Tzu Chi established the first environmental education station in Tai Wai Liaison Office, where new momentum was injected to fuel Tzu Chi’s mission on environmental protection in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong branch has so far set up a network of 20 environmental recycling stations throughout the city. The total weight of recycling items, including plastic, paper, hardware and glass, collected by the community was 268,128 kg in 2019. Tzu Chi started operating the “GREEN @ QUARRY BAY” which is the ‘one of the recycling stores of the “GREEN @ COMMUNITY” program launched by the Department of Environmental Protection. “GREEN @ QUARRY BAY” launched at the end of December 2020 has brought Tzu Chi Hong Kong to a new chapter in environmental recycling.

For more information, please refer to the official website of the Tzu Chi Environmental Action Center: www.tzuchieac.org.hk

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