Joseph Lam and World Children's Fund-HK
The World Children's Fund-HK story cannot be separated from the biography of Joseph Lam, the visionary founder of both WCF-HK and the WCF Global Care and Share Network.
Driven passionately by a singular vision, Mr. Lam has already emerged as one of the leading humanitarians of the twenty-first century. In everything he does, he approaches problems with “big picture” solutions and a relentless energy that will not let go in a crisis situation until he sees a solution.
He has the gift of attracting caring contributors, personal supporters, and professional staff to create teams who are financing and effecting a revolution in child rescue and care around the world.
“What makes us different,” says Mr. Lam, “is not only our mission to help rescue needy children who are abandoned, distressed, exploited, hungry, sick or suffering - others share these goals. What makes WCF-HK different is that we are accomplishing this quickly on a significant scale through an innovative global network of caring and sharing.”
Born in colonial Hong Kong, China in 1958, Joseph immigrated to the United States in 1966. The personal suffering and sacrifice he has experienced in his own life is no doubt a contributing reason why he feels such compassion and empathy for needy children and their families.
As the youngest child in his family, Joseph played at his immigrant mother’s feet as she washed dishes in Chinese restaurants to survive in the United States. As he grew older, young Joseph began a personal search to find a calling on his own life – a way to make his mark and to leave this world a better place. In 1982, he had a life-changing encounter with relief workers in Calcutta, India. Seeing their devotion to the sick and dying opened Joseph’s compassionate eyes to a whole new way of service.
He instantly felt he had to do something about the outrages against homeless children he saw abandoned in the streets of Calcutta and other 3rd world countries. Eventually, this goal led him to devote his life to helping others, especially needy children.
In the mid-90s, he started his first children’s project and incorporated World Children’s Fund for the first time in the USA. Almost from the start, Joseph traveled the world helping local leaders set up indigenous WCF-style organizations, such as World Children's Fund-HK. These local charities work together informally through the WCF Global Care and Share Network to reduce costs and increase the efficiency of providing relief services for children at risk.
Friends in 12 countries have organized or are now organizing separate, local WCF-patterned organizations. The various World Children’s Fund organizations work together through the WCF Global Care and Share Network to co-sponsor projects, deliver relief, and save funds by avoiding duplication of organizations and facilities.
In 1998, before reaching 40, Joseph was honored with a Ph.D. from Liberty University (Virginia, USA) for "his distinguished humanitarian efforts to save the lives of needy children."
Today, Mr. Lam continues to travel the world with his message that everyone can be involved in saving the children. Relentless growth of relief services is the goal. Giving birth to new programs and attracting leaders from every level of society are the next two steps.