James A. Handrich Service Leadership Endowment Fund 
The domestic helpers present at a workshop held by Isabella Lin '25 focused on increasing financial literacy among migrant workers. 
The James A. Handrich Service Leadership Endowment Fund (also known as the Jim Handrich Award) was established in June 2007 by HKIS and alumni Desmond Chu ’91 and Kenneth Koo ’79, in honor of Associate Head of School James (Jim) A. Handrich. Jim retired in July 2007 after 24 years with HKIS.

The purpose of this Endowment is to help further the school’s Mission and two Student Learning Results: Self-Motivated Learning and Contributing to Society. Students are invited to apply for funding each year to support their projects. This year, 14 students received a grant for work on 10 respective projects.

Read about their impact below!
Empowering Underprivileged Children with Ethics of Artificial Intelligence 
Sophie Ma ‘25 and Kristy Luk ‘25
Sophie and Kristy were awarded funding for creating a course that educated underprivileged children on Artificial Intelligence (AI). Given the rising relevance of AI in our world, many questions are also raised about its ethicality. However, there are many children who are unaware of the concerns of AI. To help increase the awareness surrounding it in underprivileged communities, Kristy and Sophie held this workshop. They collaborated with the NGO Project Sparks, which focuses specifically on refugee children.

While many organizations are focused on advancing AI, Kristy, Sophie and the people at Project Sparks ask a bigger question: “Is AI serving the right purpose?”. In the future, Kristy and Sophie hope to expand their course to other NGOs too.
Cardboard Collectors Care Club
Jaiman Gupta ‘25
Jaiman was awarded funding for his dedication to supporting cardboard collectors in Hong Kong. HK is home to over 7,000 cardboard collectors, who search and sell empty cardboard boxes, but often suffer from multiple health issues due to a lack of protective gear.

Jaiman will use the fund money to distribute care packages and supplies to cardboard collectors.

This is also the mission of his newly-founded club, the Cardboard Collectors Care Club, which has already been distributing care kits to cardboard collectors. The club works with the NGO Youth With a Mission, who are supplying the club with the care packages and other supplies.
Dollars and Sense: Building Financial Literacy and Fostering a Supportive Community
Isabella Lin '25 
Isabella was awarded funding for holding a workshop and social media campaign to increase financial literacy among Hong Kong domestic workers. When her helper had to abruptly quit due to financial difficulties, Isabella realized a necessity to create awareness around making conscious financial decisions for domestic workers.

With the funding, Isabella worked with NGO Enrich, who help increase financial literacy among domestic workers, to create social media campaigns where workers received weekly tips on financial literacy. 

In April, she held a workshop where workers could form support networks with each other and discuss what they had understood about financial literacy.
Empower Lens 
Athena Lam '27
Athena was awarded funding for her plans to fund photoshoot sessions for children with genetic disabilities. For children with these issues, it can be difficult to get photos taken for functional purposes, and most photographers are unable to cope with their complications. Athena’s younger sister has a similar condition which causes delayed cognitive and motor skill development; however her parents were able to get photos taken of her thanks to a supportive photographer.

Many other children are not offered the same privilege, therefore Athena is hoping that with Empower Lens, she can fund photographers and children to have ID and headshot photos taken of them so that they can also enjoy the benefits of having functional photos.

Planting the Seeds: Legal Aid for Refugees 
Katelyn Horng '25
Katelyn was awarded funding for raising funds and awareness towards the legal struggles faced by refugees in Hong Kong. She worked with the NGO Justice Centre and helped them raise funds to support refugees with legal issues through a mock trial event that took place over the course of two weekends. Participants paid a fee before training with HKU and Justice Centre lawyers during the first weekend. During the second one, they participated in a mock trial, where they would receive feedback from the lawyers.

All funds from the trial went directly to the Justice Centre.

Through this mock trial, Katelyn hopes that it both helped students interested in law make connections with people in the field and also understand more about the legal struggles faced by refugees.
STEAM Day MS Ambassadors 
Avi Shekhar '27, Ardan Li '27, Anisha Grover '28, Zachary Lai '27
Avi, Arden, Anisha and Zachary were awarded funding for hosting a workshop to help underprivileged children explore concepts in nutrition, robotics and art. Students from non-international schools often do not get the opportunity to see creative ways of learning concepts in class, and therefore might not connect with them.

Hoping to help these students, the 9th and 8th graders hosted 44 underprivileged children of non-Chinese backgrounds with the support of IBEL, a Jordan-based educational charity.

The workshop gave both sides something to learn: the IBEL beneficiaries learned more about these STEAM concepts, while the HKIS community participating in the workshop learned what the world looks like for students like these.
The Mills in HKIS 
Jacob Ahn '27 
Jacob was awarded funding for creating a service club focused on textile sustainability. He is working with Mills Fabrica, a company investing in sustainable innovations in various companies. One such company is Techstyle, which hopes to create affordable, sustainable solutions for textiles and fashion waste.

On May 7, Jacob collaborated with Techstyle to create a workshop for himself and other HKIS students to participate in and learn about fabric recycling.

Next year, he will be bringing his club ‘The Mills’ to HKIS at the Club Marketplace. Some activities planned include recycling old HKIS uniforms and working with the HKIS art department to create a sustainability-themed exhibition.
Mindfulness Crochet 
Maia Koller '29 
Maia was awarded funding for creating a community for people to destress by crocheting. An avid crocheter, Maia was interested in creating a group like this when she visited the Deer Park Monastery in San Diego, California USA, was placed in a Dar Ma circle, which was a judgment-free zone for people to share stories, and aspired to create a similar atmosphere through these crochet groups.

The crochet groups will start with reading a chapter from a Thich Nhat Hanh (the founder of the Deer Park Monastery) book, followed by 10-15 minutes of crocheting, before concluding with participants sharing something about themselves at the end.
The crocheting will be a form of mediation to help participants destress.
Together We Shine
Nicholas Lin '33
Together We Shine is a student-led project that aims to provide underserved Hong Kong students with access to English reading opportunities through donated English books, pen pal programs, and on-site reading volunteers, all with the support of the HKIS community.

Thanks to the James A. Handrich Service Leadership Endowment Fund, Together We Shine has received seed funding to provide these students with the necessary resources.

Visible Homeless Website 
Francis He '33 
Previously awarded funding in 2023 for raising awareness in his local community about the struggles homeless people in HK face, Francis was awarded funding this year for creating a computer game and website to further increase consciousness about this topic. On the website, Francis will showcase past walks, set up blog and discussion posts, and give visitors chances to donate to these causes. The computer game will be part of this website to bring awareness to younger children in an innovative manner. Through this website,

Francis hopes to continue raising a spirit of awareness and service in young children by giving them a dedicated space for discussing and learning about the struggles homelessness creates.

MS Green House
Rochelle Lu '28 & Riya Rai '28
Rochelle and Riya were awarded funding for building a greenhouse in the Middle School gardens. As part of the Grow Your Mind Club, they realized that many plants couldn’t grow successfully due to factors like Hong Kong’s rainy, humid climate and pests.

Rochelle and Riya will use this greenhouse to continue educating students on sustainability and using it as a learning space while drawing upon the Student Learning Results of Self-Motivated Learning and Contribution to Society.

They will also use the greenhouse to support culinary arts, social studies and science classes.