“I’ve been working with DADs Network for a year and a half. We work to raise awareness of the important role dads play in a child’s development. I organise events, parenting skills workshops and mutual support groups to provide a safe and encouraging network for fathers. Before this I was working for an NGO that championed women’s rights and equality for almost a decade. I decided to work in that field because I grew up in a single-parent family. My mother raised me and my brother alone, sometimes working four jobs at a time just to make sure we have food on the table. I saw how tough life can be when a father figure is absent. Looking back, it might seem funny that I’ve gone from working with a female-focused organisation to a male-focused one. But I really believe it takes two to tango; men have to be educated on how they can support women and vice versa. Some dads feel like they shouldn’t or can’t be involved in raising their kids - either because they don’t know how to, or they feel that as the breadwinner, they don’t need to. Here at DADs Network we really want to shift this mindset to remind families that fathers have both the right, and the responsibility, to be involved in the development of their kids.”
「我喺 DADs Network 呢度工作咗一年半。我哋嘅工作係希望令大家認識到每位爸爸喺小朋友嘅成長階段，都係有好重要嘅角色。我會統籌各類型嘅活動、育兒工作坊同埋交流小組，希望為各位爸爸提供一個互相信任同埋支持嘅網絡。未加入呢度之前，我喺一間推動婦女平權嘅慈善機構做咗差唔多10年。當時決定喺嗰度工作，係因為我自己喺單親家庭長大。我媽媽一個人湊大我同細佬，為咗有錢開飯，有時要一個人打四份工。我感受過一個冇父親嘅家庭係可以有幾吃力。而家轉咗去關注男性, 睇返可能有啲奇怪，但我深信一隻手掌真係拍唔響，男士需要學習點樣去支持女士，女士都一樣需要。有啲爸爸覺得佢哋唔應該或者冇辦法參與去教小朋友，可能因為佢哋唔識點教，或者覺得男士負責賺錢養家，教小朋友呢啲嘢唔需要佢哋操心。喺 DADs Network 呢度，我哋好希望改變呢種觀念，令家長知道，其實每位爸爸都有權同埋有責任去一齊教育佢哋嘅小朋友。」
「細個嗰陣，我身邊冇一個男性可以俾我做榜樣。我記得喺學校嘅親子活動裡面，我會覺得好尷尬，因為我冇爸爸。後來我好幸運地遇到一個男性榜樣，佢就係我青年時期嘅籃球教練。我發覺唔係每個小朋友都咁好彩，可以喺人生入面有一個好嘅男性榜樣，所以我覺得 DADs Network 去培育多啲男性榜樣嘅工作係好重要。我嗰時好投入打籃球，有多咗自信心，仲可以代表香港去比賽。喺我打得最好嘅時候，我喺 一場同國內地區嘅友誼賽 入面撻低咗 ，胸口以下地方無晒知覺。 醫生同我講得兩成機會行得返。我嗰年18歲, 變得好失落，對人生冇哂希望。好奇蹟地，透過有一班好支持我嘅人，同埋用過唔同嘅方法，譬如係中醫咁，我喺兩年後可以行得返。嗰次經歷令我知道生命有幾咁珍貴，亦都促使我去讀社工，去幫其他人渡過難關。」
“I’ve had some really touching experiences at the DADs Network. One of the dads unfortunately had to deal with a bereavement of his wife and the other dads immediately stepped in to offer help with childcare; they would call him everyday to make sure he felt less alone and provided support in any way they could. Compassion, to me, is about setting aside the tendency to compare and being with the other person in their own space and emotions fully. Many people try to lighten a situation by saying “at least you have this, at least you have that”. From experience, that doesn’t help at all - what people need when going through a dark patch is full acceptance and empathy of their situation, not how they are relative to another. Outside of work, I still play basketball and am also a laughter yoga coach. Hongkongers are really funny and friendly people, but are sometimes too reserved to laugh openly. I want to spread the joy of laughing and let people know that we can often influence our own body to bring us more happiness, just like laughing!
「我喺 DADs Network 呢度遇過一啲好感人嘅事。 試過有一個爸爸好不幸咁要面對喪妻之痛，其他爸爸知道咗之後，二話不說主動幫佢手湊住小朋友，佢哋每一日會打電話俾嗰位爸爸關心下佢，等佢知道唔係得自己一個去面對，大家諗得到點樣幫就盡力幫。同理心，對於我嚟講，係要放低嗰種互相比較嘅諗法，完全喺對方嘅世界同埋情緒入面陪伴佢。好多人會嘗試叫人睇開啲，會話「起碼你仲有呢樣嘢，仲有嗰樣嘢。」我嘅經驗話俾我知，咁樣係冇乜幫助。對於經歷緊低潮嘅人嚟講，佢哋需要嘅係有人完全接納同埋感受佢哋嘅處境，而唔係攞佢哋嘅處境同其他人比較。工作以外嘅時間，我依然會去打籃球，我亦都係一個大笑瑜伽嘅導師。香港人其實好風趣好友善，只不過有時會有啲拘謹，唔會喺大庭廣眾笑得好大聲。我想宣揚大笑嘅樂趣，令大家知道其實我哋可以用我哋嘅身體去為自己帶嚟更多歡樂，就好似大笑多啲咁！」
Want to know more about DADs Network?
Check out our field trip report and learn more about the organisation and how you can help!