A Fund-raising Birthday Party

On the evening of 4th December, 2015, the Foundation organized a party at the Chinese Club in Central to celebrate the 80th birthday of Mr. Lester Chan, a dedicated educator and former English teacher at St. Joseph’s Anglo-Chinese School. Mr. Chan taught English at St. Joseph’s for some 30 years, and since his retirement has published a series of books on the use of the English language to pass on to students some essentials garnered over his long career as an English teacher.

During his tenure at St. Joseph’s, Mr. Chan was well liked by his students, many of whom have kept up a close relationship to this day. Therefore, it was little surprise that his former students turned up in force at his 80th birthday party. Also present were family members, some of whom had travelled from as far away as New York. In total, some 50 guests were invited.

The party quickly came to life. Thanks to Ray Gatt and Andrew Li, there was a free flow of fine wine for everyone. There were lively conversations and soon dinner was served. Mr. MAK Wai Leung, a former student, had the honor to address the gathering. Mr. Mak offered a few choice anecdotes, much to the delight of the guests. Without further ado, the microphone was passed to the birthday boy.

Lester sir, as he is often fondly called, took the stage. Having the gift of the gab, he delivered a very entertaining speech. He mentioned various funny stories during his career and what he had been doing after retirement. He went on to acknowledge, in the context of ‘relevance’ and ‘resonance’, his appreciation of a number of individuals. He reminded his students present, many of whom are quite successful in their respective professions, of noblesse oblige and urged them never to give up such high ideals. He left to the last what was perhaps most profound. He quoted philosopher Heraclitus’ dictum: No man ever steps in the same river twice. The meaning, of course, is: for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man. To his students, perhaps, the wisdom of an 80-year old is in embracing change because everything flows and nothing is permanent. Thank you, Lester sir!

Mr. Chan is a staunch supporter of Rev. Brother Paul Sun Education Foundation. On this auspicious occasion, he gave generously a donation of $8,000. From this fund-raising birthday dinner, the Foundation managed to raise a total of over $40,000. Mr. Chan is in excellent health. We wish him happiness and look forward to his 90th birthday party.

Edit: This article previously stated that $400,000 was raised. This has been corrected to $40,000.

See photos from the event on our Facebook page below: