Volunteering Across JWB: A Conversation Between Philip and Alice

January 16, 2024
Category: Communications | People Profile

Our team spotlight of 2022 focuses on Philip Shin, a new Board Member and Alice Chuck, a student PR Fellow who interviewed Philip for this piece. Here is what she learned:

Our team spotlight this year focuses on Philip Shin, a new Board Member and Alice Chuck, a student PR Fellow who interviewed Philip for this piece. Here is what she learned: Philip moved from Singapore to Hong Kong a couple of years ago for his job as the Director of Finance and Control of Asia at the Ageas Group, a large insurance focused corporation. As a seasoned volunteer back in Singapore, Philip looked for opportunities to give back after he came to Hong Kong. He soon found JWB, where he joined our Board of Directors in August 2022. As a PR fellow, I spoke with Philip about his journey with us in his first year.

Philip knows about migrant domestic workers, first as an employer himself, and also as a volunteer. He has worked as a mentor to ethnic minority children whose parents are migrant workers. “Some students are diligent and motivated to get to college, even becoming teachers and policemen,” Philip recounted, “It is a way of giving back to their parents”. Being the only “non-legal” member on our board, Philip did feel a little intimidated at first, but he soon found his role. “I realised that I have the financial expertise the team is lacking,” he said, “but of course I need to improve my legal knowledge. Then, I can better support our programmatic initiatives”.

 Philip is currently focusing on corporate governance and financial matters on the Board. The experience is an exciting departure from his dayjob. “Corporate governance for a boutique regional NGO is very different from the large-scale corporate organisation I come from,” said Philip. “Another new challenge for me is fundraising. We need to increase our presence and emphasise our specialty – that we are the only NGO supporting cross-border litigation for migrant workers.”

When asked his thoughts on direct mentoring versus serving on an NGO Board, in volunteering, Philip paused for a brief moment, then said “I enjoy both working directly with kids and contributing “backstage” with JWB honestly. While I can directly see the difference I have made to a young person’s life through mentoring, I know I am helping JWB develop a solid foundation to potentially help many hundreds of migrant workers and more.

I was inspired by Philip’s commitment to volunteering and his humbleness to serve. For an undergraduate history major like me, his remarks on being a nonlegal member in the team resonated with my personal experience at JWB. My journey as a PR Fellow has included challenges and feedback for improvement, but gradually I have overcome the steep learning curve with my supervisor’s guidance. The team’s synergy and ever supportive culture is what motivates me to keep volunteering and learning with JWB for over eight months and counting. Whether you are an experienced professional like Philip, or a student who wants to learn and contribute to a good cause, JWB is a welcoming place that lets all of us lend a hand as we grow, at whatever level we happen to be at.

PR Fellow, Alice Chuck