“I See The Urgent Needs of Children”: A Dialogue with The “Firefighter of Charity Work”

Conference: The Asian Conference on Media, Communication & Film (MediAsia2022)
Title: “I See The Urgent Needs of Children”: A Dialogue with The “Firefighter of Charity Work”
Stream: Critical and Cultural Studies, Gender and Communication
Presentation Type: Live-Stream Presentation
Shuk Ling Cheng, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Andrew Chan, City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong


This paper explores the career journey of an award-winning founder of a charity. The interview data comprised a Zoom recording, which was auto-converted into verbatim transcript, and then analyzed using social-cultural discourse analysis with a focus on the use of descriptive metaphors by the speaker. The first part of interview consisted of an informative public speaking by the speaker whose impetus in the narrative accentuated his spiritual calling to establish a charity that sponsored left-behind children with HIV AIDS positive whilst fighting social stigma. Metaphors were used, particularly when the speaker referred himself as “a firefighter trying to put the fire out” seeing the urgent needs of underprivileged children in rural areas of China. The second part of the interview consisted of dialogues between the speaker and audience, in which the speaker gave reasons for the changes in his career journey from being an investment banker to the founder of charity. The figurative speech of a “wagon” depicted his identity struggle as a result of “jumping off from investment banking wagon”. The transformation of the speaker’s self-discovery associated with career change could be observed from the analysis.

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