2010.09.19 Sunday

Starfish Charitable Trust Fund Raising Concert - Press Release


Venue: ICA, International Christian Assembly, 483 King's Road, North Point, Hong Kong
Dates: Friday, 22 Oct 2010 evening show, Saturday, 23 Oct 2010 matinee and evening show 
Time: Matinee 3pm, Evening show 8pm
Tickets: Matinee HKD300/HKD100, Evening show HKD1000/HKD500/HKD200
Sales Enquiry: info@starfishtrust.org.hk

The Starfish Story

There was a young man walking down a deserted beach just before dawn. In the distance, he saw a frail old man. As he approached the old man, he saw him picking up stranded starfish and throwing them back into the sea.

The young man gazed in wonder as the old man again and again threw the small starfish from the sand to the water. He asked, “Old man, why do you spend so much energy doing what seems to be a waste of time?”

The old man explained that the stranded starfish would die if left in the morning sun. “But there must be thousands of beaches and millions of starfish!”, exclaimed the young man and “How can you make any difference?”

The old man looked down at the small starfish in his hands and as he threw it to the safety of the sea, he said, “I made a difference to this one.”

That’s the same principle Starfish Charitable Trust embraces, that is, The Principle of One. No matter who you are, you can make a difference as long as you are willing.

The Birth of Starfish

In October 2003, our founder Elana Ho visited Fuzhou, China. Hidden amongst the beauty of flora and fauna were children in the orphanage who are seriously afflicted with different kinds of physical disabilities and sicknesses. These poor children, lying quietly in their bed, deformed or seriously ill, were a very disturbing sight for Elana. She went home heavy hearted and filled with compassion for these orphans.

In March 2004, a visit to a Luoyang orphanage further confirmed her earlier observations in Fuzhou, that over 98% of children are abandoned by their parents because they are either seriously deformed or are afflicted with sicknesses. If they do not receive relevant medical treatment, they will have no chance to be normal or near normal, and certainly no chance to be adopted at all. Some will eventually die in the orphanages!

It is really appalling to realize that thousands of children in China today are abandoned for various reasons, and left to die or grow up as orphans. These poor children are robbed of parental love and care, emotionally scarred for life. Elana was moved to tears by a nine year old boy, mentally sound except for his right hand, which was like a protruding stump, hanging around his neck. His eyes were staring blankly at the floor all the time, not daring to make any direct eye contact with visitors. His shame, awkward posture and silence deeply touched Elana. She heard the cries from his heart, and wanted to do something to help change his life.

After much prayers and confirmation (including getting to know “The Starfish Story”), Elana was convinced that God wanted her to help these children in a practical way. Children with medical needs require treatment and restoration to full health, whether physically, emotionally or spiritually. We aim to not just help these children lift up their hands and feet, but to help lift up their hearts and head bravely to face tomorrow. The will be filled with His love and hope, completely healed and changed!

This is how Starfish Charitable Trust started.

Why the Fund Raising Concerts

Since the inception of Starfish Charitable Trust, we have depended on the kindheartedness and donations of friends and corporations to help the many children. Many benevolent doctors have also come on board to volunteer their time and skills to operate on some of the children. From working with just one orphanage in Luoyang, Starfish now supports children from 8 orphanages all over China. Thus far, Starfish has financed 73 surgeries on 70 children, with 3 children having to go through 2 surgeries each. This October, we expect to help at least 9 children in 3 different parts of China through surgery, and for the rest of 2010, there are still 47 children waiting for us to finance their operations. Medical costs are high. The average cost of a surgery is HKD23,000 and the average cost of a 12-month rehabilitation of one child is HKD12,000. As the needs are so big, we are urgently in need of more funds to help these children.

We hope that the series of concerts will not only raise sufficient funds for the medical treatment of the orphans, and also, to spread the message of goodwill and love Starfish has for the children. We also wish to raise public awareness for the Starfish ministry so that more people and corporations can come forward to support and help these children. Please know that 100% of funds raised will go towards the children, as volunteers fund their own visits to the orphanages. 

Guest Artist

Budak Pantai

Budak Pantai, meaning Beach Boys in Malay, comprises of 5 members – Danny Lai, Joseph Wong, Ho Kah Keh, Gordon Ng and Michael Loh. For over 10 years that they were doing A cappella, Danny didn’t know what to do with his hands when on stage. So he brought along a guitar. Today, they perform in the ensemble of 5 men and a guitar. “Fun” is the operative word for Budak Pantai.

Starfish Charitable Trust is grateful that Budak Pantai are taking time to perform at no fee, so that all money raised will go towards the children Starfish supports. For enquiry on the concert, please contact info@starfishtrust.org.hk. 

For enquiry on Starfish, general information and/or to make donations, please email info@starfishtrust.org.hk or visit our website http://starfishtrust.org.hk/ for more information.