About Hong Kong Humanity Award
Eligibility of Candidate
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Previous Hong Kong Humanity Award
The awardee of the Second Hong Kong Humanity Award - Sister Helen Marie KENNY

Sister Helen Kenny is one of the active pioneers who led and promoted the hospice movement in Hong Kong and participated in the development of quality hospice care for terminally ill patients as well as voluntary work at the frontline. Her interest in providing end-of-life care for people with terminal illnesses began in the early 1970s. During that time, caring for dying patients was a completely new concept and palliative care was not yet widely accepted.

Sister Helen, Dr Yu Wing Kwong and Ms Lucy Chung piloted the first palliative care team and Home Care program at Our Lady of Maryknoll Hospital for terminally ill cancer patients. Together with a team of other medical and nursing staff, they provided support to dying patients and their families to relieve their anxiety and fear.

Sister Helen was elected a member of the Society for the Promotion of Hospice Care (SPHC) Executive Committee in 1988. Together with fund raising support and planning efforts steered by other council members of SPHC, she then worked with SPHC to bring the holistic concept of the established hospice care of the West to Hong Kong. She participated in the planning and building of the first independent hospice in Hong Kong – the Bradbury Hospice (BBH) situated in Shatin. After three years operation by SPHC, a submission was made to the Hospital Authority to take over management and control of BBH. This important milestone signified public recognition of the importance of hospice care in Hong Kong. A Hospice Governing Committee was set up; two thirds of its Members appointed by SPHC. Sister Helen is a Committee Member.

In 2008, Sister Helen continued her work with cancer patients through BBH and Make-A-Wish Foundation. She also assisted the Keswick Foundation to develop Maggie's Cancer Caring Centre, a new resource and support centre for cancer patients, which offers a different form of psychosocial support in a warm and peaceful environment. This is yet another major contribution of her dedication to create and widen the support to cancer patients at all stages of the life-threatening illness.