Hsieh Sin-yan (Fencing, front row, 3rd from left) and Chan Yui-lam (Swimming – Hong Kong Sports Association for Persons with Intellectual Disability, second row, 4th from right), award winners of the 4th quarter of the Sports for Hope Foundation Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards 2018.
Hsieh Sin-yan (Fencing, back row, 2nd from left) and Hui Ka-chun (Swimming – Hong Kong Sports Association for Persons with Intellectual Disability, back row, 2nd from right), award winners of the 1st quarter of the Sports for Hope Foundation Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards 2018.
Soo Wai-yam (Table Tennis, middle), award winner of the 1st quarter of the Sports for Hope Foundation Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards 2017.
Cheung Ka-long (Fencing, middle), award winner of the 2nd quarter of the Sports for Hope Foundation Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards 2016.
Siobhan Haughey (Swimming, middle) was presented the Certificate of Merit and named the Most Outstanding Junior Athlete Award for 2013 at the annual celebration and 4th quarter of the Sports for Hope Foundation Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards 2013 Presentation Ceremony.
Hong Kong athletes excelled at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, achieving a record-breaking result of 1 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze, a total of 6 medals at the Olympics; and 2 sliver and 3 bronze at the Paralympics. In addition to their talents and efforts, the support from various sectors, including the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government, the Sports Federation & Olympic Committee of Hong Kong, China (SF&OC), respective National Sports Associations and the HKSI, had played an indispensable role in making these happen. More importantly, the encouragement from all sectors of the community is pivotal to the development of local junior athletes, such as the Sports for Hope Foundation (SFHF) who has been sponsoring the Outstanding Junior Athlete Awards (OJAA) organised by the HKSI and supported by SF&OC and the Hong Kong Sports Press Association since 2012.Of those athletes participating in the Olympic and Paralympic Games this year, 24 of them won the OJAA during SFHF’s sponsorship period. Among them were the Olympic men’s foil individual gold medallist Cheung Ka-long, women’s 100m and 200m freestyle silver medallist Siobhan Haughey, bronze medallists Doo Hoi-kem and Soo Wai-yam of the women’s table tennis team, and Wong Ting-ting, bronze medallist in women’s singles TT11 event at the Paralympic Games.
Dr Trisha Leahy SBS BBS, Chief Executive of the HKSI, said, “I sincerely thank the SFHF for supporting the OJAA over the past decade. The award is an affirmation to young people who have just begun to participate in sports and it can make them more confident in the pursuit of sporting excellence. In fact, many Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic medallists have won the OJAA in their youth, it is a sound proof of the importance of encouragement to young budding talents.”
Founder of the SFHF Marie-Christine Lee said, “OJAA is an award scheme to encourage young athletes with remarkable achievements. SFHF does share a similar vision to support more young people to further their sports passion and enhance their personal development, thus bringing out synergy and dynamics in different perspectives. I am extremely pleased to see many past OJAA recipients have grown into Olympic or Paralympic medallists.”
The SFHF has injected HK$1.8 million to support the OJAA continuously since 2012 to recognise outstanding achievements of local junior athletes under the age of 19 in international and local competitions on a quarterly basis. Besides, the SFHF also invited athletes to participate in the Sports for Hope Talent Search Fundraising Day, an event organised by the SFHF and the SF&OC in 2017 aiming to encourage sport enthusiasts to explore their potential and let Hong Kong people have a better understanding on elite athletes through athletes’ sharing of their training experiences and lifestyle as an elite athlete. Participating athletes included Ho Tze-lok (Squash), Ho Kwan-kit and Soo Wai-yam (Table Tennis), as well as Lau Chi-lung and Mok Uen-ying (Wushu).
As the Government’s designated organisation to provide the high performance training system for eligible sports, the HKSI is committed to providing an environment in which sports talent can be identified, nurtured and developed to pursue excellence in the international sporting arena and to inspire potential athletes to pursue a full-time sports career.