My Amazing Experience in Hong Kong Parkview Bazaar
This semester I participated in the Hong Kong Parkview Charity bazaar as a volunteer, where I was able to learn about buying and selling while embracing the Hinrich Foundation’s spirit of promoting sustainable global trade.
Handmade products by disadvantaged worker in Cambodia
By selling handmade products made by disadvantaged workers in Cambodia, we are able to help these people in need to support themselves and their families. We primarily sold Christmas ornaments, including reindeers, horses, elephants, and snowmen. In addition to Christmas decorations, we also sold handmade purses and bags at the bazaar.
This year, we received support from Fossil Group and Global Sources. Three volunteers from Fossil Group and Brandon from Global Sources offered great help during the bazaar.
I, along with fellow Hinrich Foundation scholars Suri and Lorie left Hong Kong Baptist University at 7:30 am, to ensure we’d arrive at Parkview before 9 am for the bazaar. Although we planned to prepare ahead of time, we overlooked one important factor: the Occupy Central Movement’s impact on the transportation system.
According to the plan, we were supposed to take a taxi outside the Admiralty Metro station. However, it was impossible to find a taxi outside the station. I even tried to call for a taxi but the reply I received was that the taxi could not access the Admiralty Metro Station because of the blocked roads.
After consulting the staff in Metro station, we decided to take the subway to Central station to see whether we could find a taxi there. When we got out of the station, we still could not find a taxi. We were a little disappointed.
Luckily Suri finally spotted a taxi on the road that was about 50 meters away from us. We were so excited we ran right to it. About 15 minutes later, we finally got in a taxi and arrived at Parkview right before 9 am.
Although we still made it on time finally, this incident has left a deep impression on me. We should have foreseen this problem and adjusted our transportation plans or thought about some plan B. I really learnt a lesson from it and will be more careful and give more consideration for important things when planning for an event.
After we arrived, we started to set up our booth according to the guidance given by Annabat, a volunteer from Fossil Group. We used various tools for product exhibition. One or two ornaments of each category were placed in order in a plastic box, while some ornaments were hung on the mini Christmas tree.
The most impressive thing was that we put a great amount of ornaments in two glass containers. Besides, the lady purses and bags were placed in order in front of one glass container. The jewelry was put in the jewelry box. The colorful ornaments, especially those in the glass containers and those on the Christmas trees attracted many customers walking by.
Due to the Occupy Central Movement, the number of customers were not so large that day, which may have affected our sales to some extent. But the whole team showed wonderful teamwork. The volunteers from Fossil Group and Global Sources were very active in approaching customers, introducing the charitable aim of this bazaar and promoting our products. Brandon, the volunteer from Global Sources, greeted every customers and invited them to look at our products. His passion inspired the other volunteers.
I was not so active in approaching customers and promoting the products, mainly due to my introverted personality. It is a pity that I could not overcome this obstacle and I realized that I should make efforts to be more confident and outgoing when communicating with strangers. I was deeply inspired by the passion of other volunteers and I am sure I will do a better job next time.
Standing beside the stall, I was so surprised about the sales we had made. I started to understand where the wonderful changes come from. Every positive change comes from our daily act. When someone buys one little elephant handmade ornament or when someone volunteers to be the salesperson in the charity bazaar, these positive changes happen silently. More jobs are created and more needy people in Cambodia can lead a better life. We make this happen through our little kind act.
About the Author – WU Haoqi (Amy)