Chan Sheung Yee: Champion of well-being

    Business Spotlight Audio 5/2024
    Chan Sheung Yee standing in front of sign
    © Privat
    Von Rachel Preece

    Starten Sie den Audio-Text

    Mit dem Audio-Player können Sie sich den Text anhören. Darunter finden Sie das Transkript.

    Chan Sheung Yee wants to raise awareness of mentalhier: psychischmental health in China. In 2020, he found sth.etw. gründenfounded a non-profit organization, called companionGefährte/ Gefährtin, Begleiter(in)Companion HK, which has supported more than 500 people, helping them to reintegrate into society and find employment. His work is crucial(äußerst) wichtigcrucial in a country that has long neglect sth.etw. vernachlässigen; hier auch: keine Beachtung schenkenneglected this issueProblemissue.

    In July 2023, Coco Lee, a popular Chinese‑​American singer and actress, commit suicideSelbstmord begehencommitted suicide after a long battle with depression. Her death focused attention on the topicThematopic of mental health in China, which has about two psychiatrists per 100,000 people, compared to a global average of nine, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO also estimates that some 54 million people in China suffer from depression, while 41 million have anxiety disorderAngststörunganxiety disorders. In 2022, The Economist reported that China’s collective mental health had been declineabnehmen; hier: sich verschlechterndeclining since long before the pandemic. Shanghai’s suicide rate has been rising since 2009 — Covid made things worse. Chan says the pandemic opened his eyes to the importance of mental health. “I was an undergrad student (ifml.)Student(in) vor dem ersten akademischen Gradundergrad student at the time,” he told Business Spotlight. “Many students had been diagnosed with Covid and needed to be isolated, and many turned to the school for help, saying they were very depressed. There were many cases of people seeking help for emotional distressNot(lage)distress during the pandemic.”

    Chan has first-hand experience of mental-health challenges. As an infantKleinkindinfant, he had brain cancer, which caused deafnessTaubheitdeafness in his right ear and an 80 per cent loss of visionSehkraftvision in his right eye. His language development and facial featureGesichtszugfacial features were affectedbetroffenaffected, too. “Other students would make fun of me and reject sb.jmdn. zurückweisenreject me because of my appearance,” he says. “But, after a period of time, I saw that other students and I could get alongsich verstehenget along well. So, I think misunderstanding can be reduced through contact and communication.”

    In 2018, he attended the Chinese University of Hong Kong to study government and public administration and communications, also joining various social clubs on campus. He describes the experience as a “turning point” in his life, and he quickly realized that he wanted to focus on mental health. “Although we [people with disabilityBehinderungdisabilities] may be misunderstood, this doesn’t prevent us from developing our potential and helping others,” he said in a TED Talk.

    Being a companion

    After noticing that many other students seemed unhappy, Chan decided to set up Companion HK. Just a few days after its launchStartlaunch, the pandemic lockdown began in Hong Kong. Like so many others around the world, Chan moved communications online and spoke to people in video calls, essentially becoming a counsellorRatgeber(in)counsellor. “If you’re willing to listen and sit with people, it can be a great help,” he says. Companion HK has boomed, as there’s clearly demand for its services. Chan trains students and educators to improve their understanding of mental-health needs and help them to recognize warning signs. He says he trains people “to use active empathy in the workplace, because we believe that staff can help deal with students’ emotional distress.”


    Neugierig auf mehr?

    Dann nutzen Sie die Möglichkeit und stellen Sie sich Ihr optimales Abo ganz nach Ihren Wünschen zusammen.

    Business Spotlight Digital