The Hongkong Telegraph.
Saturday, December 17, 1938.
Page 18 & 21
BOY SCOUTS MOVEMENT
GOVERNOR PRESIDES OVER ANNUAL MEETING OF ASSOCIATION
Presiding as Chief Scout for the Colony at the annual meeting of the Hongkong Boys' Scouts Association yesterday, the Governor, Sir Geoffry Northcote, expressed his appreciation of the action of the Association Council in holding back from any appeal for funds at this special time.
At the conclusion of the meeting, Wood Badges were presented to District Commissioners Quah Cheow-cheang and Chan Fook-hong, District Scout Master W.C.Low, and Scout Master J.J.Ferguson.
Hon. Mr. T.N.Chau, Vice President, said:
I take this opportunity of paying a tribute to the tireless energy and wholehearted devotion Rev. N.V.Halward has given to the cause of scouting and of affirming the loyalty and cooperation of all who are privileged to cooperate with him. I would like also to say how much indebted we are to our Deputy Commissioner, Mr. Champkin who, in this emergency, has had thrust upon him the responsibility of guiding our affairs.
Notwithstanding the troublous and anxious times through which we are passing - perhaps even because of them - our strength has grown during the year. The last census in September showed a total of 911 as against 842 for the previous year. Since September there has been a further increase and we look forward with confidence to continued progress during this current year.
Our thanks are due to the Government for the grant of $1,200, and to our friends and supporters for subscriptions and donations amounting to $2,047, of which $1,000 is allocated to the debt on our Chaiwan property - the Training Camp which is our principal asset. Briefly, our general financial position is that we owe our bankers about $3,000 against which they hold as secure title deeds of property for which we paid about $16,000 10 years ago. We have not thought it necessary to get a fresh valuation of this property, as we have no intention on selling it, and for 10 years we have lived in constant hope that some generous philanthropist would free our neck from this millstone of debt. Still, you will see that our financial position gives no cause for any anxiety.
For our yearly requirements we have to raise $2,500 somehow. I need not tell you what those requirements are. You will see in the balance sheet how the money is spent and I am sure you will agree that no Association is more economically managed than ours, but this report is a rather meagre record of the return the Scouts have given in public service for the generous donations they have received. They would not thank me for enlarging on these services. It is enough to say that they have been gratefully acknowledged.
This is our Jubilee Year and I suppose I should make a special appeal to the public for funds, but I will risk the disapproval of our Treasurers and say that in this time of distress any public appeal for money should be on behalf of charitable institutions urgently engaged on the relief of suffering refugees. I believe that the reputation of the Boy Scouts in this Colony is such that our Association need have no fear that its modest requirements will not be freely fulfilled by the community that it serves.
Mr. Champkin said:
I am glad that Mr. Chau is not asking you for money. I have always refused to look upon the Boy Scouts as a charitable institution. The principles of Scouting teach as to help those who are worse off than we are. Of course, we need a little money, but we would not be good Scouts if we were not confirmed optimists, and I believe that when that need becomes urgent the public will respond as readily and generously as they have always done when we have been hard up. If the Scouts made any appeal now it would not be for money, but for wider opportunities of service in alleviating as much as they are able the grievous distress that is almost at our doors.
His Excellency said:
I should like to begin my few remarks this afternoon by congratulating the Hongkong Branch on reaching their Jubilee Year. I, and I am sure all other sympathisers with the Association, appreciate the action of the Council in holding back from any appeal for funds at this special time. I do so all the more as I have myself recently sponsored on appeal for funds for the very purpose which is the motive of your abstention; but I hope that when the present clouds have rolled away your self sacrifice of today will be rewarded deservedly by the generous minded of Hongkong.
The Report contains evidence of several acts of public spirit on the part of Scouts during the year which it reviews, and in this connection I would like to tell of the pleasure which I felt when on my second visit to the Refugee camps I found Boy Scouts already at work helping the helpless and generally fulfilling their promise. It was a great encouragement to me as Patron and Chief Scout of Hongkong to witness with my own eyes the immediate response by Hongkong Scouts as soon as an emergency showed itself. The people whom you were helping were perhaps unable to thank you for that work, but I know that you Scouts do not work for the reward of thanks.
Speaking with Mr. Halward just now I learned from him of the promising results which have followed from the appointment of Chinese District Commissioners; this, as you know, was a recent innovation and I am extremely happy to learn that it has proved so successful. I congratulate the two District Commissioners very heartily on the way in which they have taken up and carried out their duties.
Mr. Halward said: I feel rather shy in coming down to speak to you as I feel I have been an absolute slacker as far as the work of the Association is concerned, but I have been encouraged to speak to you by the fact that during recent months in Canton, when news has filtered through, I have had such good reports of the work being done in Hongkong by the scouts.
This has been entirely due to the leadership given you by the Commissioners, District Scouters and Scouters. It is to the scouters that I would say a very big thank you. On your shoulders have fallen the main work of showing the boys the work of scouting. We look to scouting as one of the adjuncts of the education of a boy which he receives at home and in the school. I consider it a very important adjunct which employs something which training in a home or a school does not supply.
This has been proved from many parts of the world that scouting has given to youth an ideal for which they strive every nerve to attain and by so doing they have been enabled to help the communities in which they live, and their countries. We have heard during the past year of many wonderful deeds by our brother scouts in China. We have also heard of some of the things done in Hongkong. These are things we expect scouts to do because scouting says "at all times we should be prepared to do our best to help other people."
These are the main things scouting is out to do and to make it a game makes it the more attractive for the boys, and they feel it is something worth while doing. I was talking to a band of Rover Scouts at St. Paul's Boys' College last night. I have had long associations with that troop, with whom I was for a time Scout Master, I told them that as Rovers they had to expand the game of scouting into one of service for their fellow men and for their community. I feel sure that in Hongkong, there has been inculcated through the scouters into the minds of the scouts, a very willing desire to do all they can to help other people.
Wood Badge Awards
The Wood Badge which will be shortly present to Messrs. Quah, Chan, Low and Ferguson by the Governor is a badge for scouters only. I am sure that these scouters have been considered efficient through having taken a correspondence course and a practical course in scout training to lend their boys. I hope that opportunities will be given during the coming year for more and more scouters to be able to take this course of training which leads up to the Wood Badge.
Those elected to serve on the Council for 1938-39 were:
Rev. N.V.Halward, Colony Commissioner; Mr. F.Cock, Esq., President; Hon. Mr. T.N.Chau, Vice President; Mr. D.A.Pockson, Secretary; Mrs. D.Booker, Acting Secretary; Lo Koon-hang; Lo Koon-kan, Treasurers.
Those elected to the Executive Committee of the Council were: Commodore E.B.C.Dicken, Col. N.M.S.Irwin, H.S.Mok, Tang Shiu-kin, F.G.Maunder, H.V.Wilkinson, Hon. Mr. M.K.Lo, C.G.Perdun.