James started collecting leftovers from chain bakeries last year. Since the epidemic situation has recently become severe, former charity partners that collected the surplus food are temporarily closed. He and fellow volunteers travel around the city, distributing supplies to the homeless.
His organisation, Green Hour, was originally an environmental protection group, mainly collecting leftover food and then donating it to the grassroots. During the peak period, they collected leftover bread from as many as 14 stores on Hong Kong Island.
When the epidemic broke out, the bakeries and grassroots groups he had worked with for a long time temporarily suspended services. Although understanding the situation, he did not want to stop helping others or wasting leftover food. It is because of this that Green Hour began to work with close volunteers to directly distribute on the street.
"Many people think that the homeless are a group of people who are rejected by society, but everyone has a different background. They live in the streets and always have their stories. These people are just experiencing the low ebb. They and we are actually both the same."
While talking with the homeless, he better understood the needs of the grassroots of society, starting online crowdfunding to be able to collect supplies such as food, masks, hand sanitiser, daily necessities, etc. Careful and aware of the needs of others, concluding: "Few institutions will collect feminine sanitary napkins, and they lack these materials, so let's do it."
Each of his organisation members has a full-time job, and for the time being, no salary or income is made through Green Hour. Sometimes working ten hours a day on Green Hour, he has never thought about giving up, because he thinks that collecting and distributing materials is helping the environment and society.
He also said that his devotion stems from his love for this city. Although from England, James came to work in Hong Kong over four years ago and feels Hong Kong is his home. He loves to listen to the likes of Sam Hui, Leslie Cheung and Beyond, and he also loves authentic food, such as cart noodles and rice noodles. He knows how to order dishes in Cantonese and is very integrated into Hong Kong-style life.
"I really like Hong Kong, no, no, I love Hong Kong." He described the city, and he hopes to stay here to support Hong Kong people.
Translation by James Marlow. Original Chinese article here.