The Rector of University of Lapland appoints Wayne Chau as the first University of Lapland Ambassador in recognition of his strong commitment to promoting visibility of the education and research at the University of Lapland globally. Photos: Marko Junttila
The Rector of University of Lapland appoints Wayne Chau as the first University of Lapland Ambassador. Photo: Marko Junttila

The Rector of University of Lapland appoints Wayne Chau as the first University of Lapland Ambassador

14.9.2018

The Rector of University of Lapland appoints Wayne Chau as the first University of Lapland Ambassador in recognition of his strong commitment to promoting visibility of the education and research at the University of Lapland globally.

Wayne is a leading social entrepreneur in Hong Kong and has founded several companies, social enterprises and charities. Born and raised in the grassroots level, He used to live in subdivided units and even once sleep on the street. He was nearly forced out of college due to financial difficulties. With his own experience of growing up in poverty, he deeply understood the sufferings faced by the poor and decided to be the change he wishes to see in the world. In 2014, he decided to suspend his successful public relations business and set up Agent of Change, a social enterprise aiming to alleviate poverty by providing affordable but high quality daily necessities to grassroots in Hong Kong. Agent of Change is now collaborating with over 300 charities, district councillors and community organizations to serve 500,000 underprivileged people in Hong Kong. In terms of number of poor people served, it is the largest social enterprise in Hong Kong.

Before fully devoting himself to the social innovation sector, he ran a public relations company which served many large enterprises including Forbes, Times Magazine, FrieslandCampina, Western Union, A.S. Watson Group and some major property developers. In 2008-10, he rebranded a listed pharmaceutical company, turned it to be one of the most popular companies for investors and helped the boss became one of the 30 richest Hong Kong people in 2010. This was regarded as a signature case in the field of financial PR. In 2011, Wayne initiated a youth entrepreneurship program “One Million Dream for Post 80’s” with the largest radio station in Hong Kong. This program set a new standard and model for supporting youth entrepreneurship and kicked off the culture.

Wayne has devoted 30% of his time on charity every year ever since secondary school. His effort is recognized by society, winning him numerous awards including the Hong Kong Volunteer Award, Hong Kong Youth Services Award and the Hong Kong Spirit Ambassadors. Apart from alleviating poverty, he also focuses on bringing disruptive changes to the system. Wayne has been appointed by the Chief Executive of Hong Kong Government to be a member of Commission on Poverty, Community Care Fund Task Force and Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Fund Task Force. With these capacities, Wayne helped decide the mechanism of setting up the poverty line, advise poverty alleviation policies and manage a fund of around US$2.5 billion supporting the poor and another fund of US$60m for impact investment. He is also a member of the Social Enterprise Advisory Committee which work on social enterprise policies.

He was also invited by the former Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa as an Advisor to a leading think-tank Our Hong Kong Foundation. He was the only social entrepreneur from Hong Kong to be nominated by the US Consulate General and selected by the US Department of State for the International Visitor Leadership Program on social entrepreneurship in US. He then took the lead to set up Global Changemakers Alliance with 22 other social innovation leaders around the globe and became the President to promote global social entrepreneurship. He is also the only Asian representative in Facebook’s global Youth Advisory Committee which helps Facebook to make the social media safer and healthier for its more than 2 billion users.

He is an icon of Finnish education promotion in the region and serves as a member of the Education Committee of Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong. He was selected as a fellow at UNLEASH Innovation Lab 2018 and he led his team to be world number 2. He is one of the education innovation leaders who ever gave talks to over 80% of secondary schools in the region.

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More information:

Outi Snellman
Director of International Relations, University of Lapland
Vice-President Organization, UArctic
outi.snellman@ulapland.fi
+358 40 501 0209

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