“I helped to start up Buddolescent about 11 years ago. We offer mindfulness-based courses and philosophy education to teenagers. The teenage phase can be challenging and turbulent; we want to provide youngsters with a space to rest, form a community and be creative. Even though we have a Buddhist connection, our activities are open to everyone. I only picked up Buddhism in high school. It resonated with me because it felt less like a religion, but more like a life philosophy. There is a lot of history and theory behind the teachings which really piqued my academic interest. I had quite a bad temper growing up, but since practising Buddhism I have learnt to appreciate the multifacetedness of any situation. I’ve become less stubborn, less judgmental and more forgiving. I’ve also learned the meaning of compassion. Compassion requires one to constantly learn, practise and experience; it’s about communicating with, understanding and learning from others. This life philosophy is something that we hope to impart to our youth groups. Our motto: ‘Do something good for yourself, do something beautiful for the world’ sums it up!”
「我係11年前幫手成立咗青一釋。我哋會搞 與靜觀相關活動 同埋青少年教育活動。青春期係好有挑戰同埋起伏嘅時期，我哋希望為年青人提供一個空間，俾佢哋調整身心， 同時建立一個平台讓一班志同道合嘅人 ，一齊發揮創意。雖然我哋個團係有佛教背景， 但係我哋歡迎任何人參加我哋嘅活動 。我喺中學先開始接觸佛教，佢好打動到我，因為我覺得佢唔太似一個宗教，反而似係一種人生哲學。佛教有好豐富嘅歷史同埋義理，令我好想深入研究佢。我細個嗰陣脾氣都幾大，但係自從開始咗佛教嘅修行之後，我明白到任何一件事都可以有唔同面向，我變得冇咁固執，少咗批判，多咗包容。我亦都明白到同理心嘅意思。同理心需要我哋持續學習、練習同埋經歷，我哋要懂得同其他人溝通、理解其他人同埋互相學習。我哋想將呢啲人生哲學傳達俾年青團員。為自己製造美善，為世界加添繽紛——就係我哋團嘅宗旨！」
“There are many youth groups around town, but not many that are truly youth-led. Here at Buddolescent, we want to empower our teenagers to learn, collaborate and lead from their perspective. The more introverted and reserved teens will collaborate with their more extroverted and outgoing peers - both play a role in inspiring and bringing out new qualities in each other. Buddhists are often stereotyped to be quite traditional and old-school - but it doesn’t have to be that way! It can also be young, fun and engaging. During COVID times we’ve had to adapt to carrying on our activities online. Even though it’s not the same as in-person gatherings, we’ve persisted in running meditation and mindfulness classes over screens. If we can play a small part in helping people find some peace and inner calm in their own homes during these uncertain times, then it’s all worth it!”
“My background is in Chinese literature, so I enjoy reading, writing, languages and words. I’m actually quite an introverted guy so I’ve definitely been pushed outside of my comfort zone with my current work, which is very people-focused. I never envisaged that my career would be something that requires me to use such a variety of skills - from PR and marketing to fundraising and running events - it’s a mixed bag but that’s what keeps it interesting. When I took the first step towards the NGO world as a fresh graduate, I knew that there was no looking back. Back then, I had a choice between going for a more conventional, stable career or to pursue something more uncertain but which resonated with my passion. I took a leap of faith and went for the latter. There are many challenges that come with running a non-profit - limited resources, limited time, finding the right people, staying true to your mission and passion - but what keeps me going is the satisfaction that comes from seeing young people grow, find joy and flourish through the work that we do!”
Want to know more about Buddolescent ?
Check out our field trip report and learn more about the organisation and how you can help