As we near the end of 2021, it is important that we take a moment to reflect on what we have been able to accomplish together. Despite continued challenges under the pandemic, we have been able to break new ground and make a positive impact in the lives of women and girls in Hong Kong.
Here are six highlights:
The End of Single Gender Boards: Last Friday, TWF and 30% Club HK welcomed key reforms from Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing that will improve board gender diversity in the short to medium term, including that single gender boards will no longer be acceptable (with a three-year transition). These changes represent considerable opportunities for women leaders who are qualified to become board members. TWF urges all companies to set meaningful targets of at least 30% by 2027.
#TEENForGood: This year, we piloted #TEENforGood to support the learning needs of unprivileged students at risk of falling behind academically due to the pandemic. Our T.E.E.N. Programme ‘graduates’ offer individual online tutoring support, which provides them with a helpful source of financial support and the opportunity to give back to the community. More broadly, this supports mothers and other family members who have taken on extra home school learning duties. Feedback has been positive from students, teachers and parents alike so we plan to expand the initiative.
Young Men’s Masculinities Research: We released the first of its kind research to understand the pressures young men face on their path to masculine success and how they perceive gender roles, women’s rising status and attitudes towards changing gender relations. At TWF, we will be drawing on the findings to inform our Young Allies Initiative to cultivate gender equal mindsets and behaviour among young men.
Girls Go Tech (GGT) Programme: Now in its sixth year, the GGT Programme added a career hub which comprises company visits, role model talks and CV-building to inspire and inform participants on the diversity of STEM careers. Participants also have access to online tutoring to enable them to excel in their online learning. Additionally, we established a Participants’ Advisory Committee who provide advice and suggestions on how to strengthen and enhance the Programme.
Hack for Gender Equality: We organised our first Hack for Gender Equality, which brought together programme participants from the Mentoring Programme for Women Leaders, Male Allies, and Women to Watch in a creative and collaborative environment to find innovative solutions to improving women’s visibility in the workplace. Drawing on its success, we plan to host another cross-programme hackathon next year.
Mentoring Programme for Women Leaders: Now in its 13th year, the Programme has drawn on its learnings and best practice to refine the curriculum to focus on inclusive leadership where we work closely with our mentors and proteges to enable them to feel equipped and inspired to be gender equality advocates in their workplaces and in the broader community.
This is but a small snapshot of the wide range of work we have been able to accomplish, none of which would have been possible without the time, creativity and passion of our diverse community of partners, donors, volunteers and supporters. Our deep thanks to each of you.
Each of us play a crucial role in closing the gender gap. Together, we can make powerful change in the lives of women and girls in Hong Kong and advance gender equality for all. We look forward to all we will accomplish together in 2022.
Get in touch at Fiona.Nott@twfhk.org.
PS: Connect will be going on winter break and will return on January 5, 2022. Warmest wishes from all of us at TWF for a happy, healthy holiday season!