'Angel Connie' will work as volunteer after retirement
"I hope 'the humanity of love' would exist forever. Everyone would lead a good and meaningful life, make the most of each and every day, enjoy life and work, and live with no regret." Welfare Services Group (WSG) Woman Sergeant (WSGT) Lee Wing-yee, Connie said this shortly before retirement after serving the Force for more than three decades.
WSGT Lee joined the Force in 1974 and was later posted to WSG, which helps Force members and their families with work-related, financial, health or any other problems.
Offering much but gaining even more
WSGT Lee's job is mentally and physically taxing, exposing her to all the realities of life - from birth to death. Being dedicated to her job, she has shed tears for officers hit by misfortunes. But, on the other hand, she got inspirations and hopes people would love each other.
She told OffBeat that while she helps Force members at her post, she had been taken care of by her colleagues. "In 1981 when I worked in the Western District Police Community Relations Office, I had my neck bone seriously injured when I fell to the ground from a stage during a function, and subsequently stayed in hospital for a long time. Luckily, I got a lot of help and support from my superiors and colleagues," she recalled.
After joining WSG, WSGT Lee kept reminding herself that she had to do her best to help officers in need, make good use of Force resources and live up to and foster the Force's spirit of caring. She noted: "If a genuine and professional officer comes along with a helping hand, one would have anxiety, fear or worry eased and come out of the ebb in life."
In her free time, WSGT Lee also helps other people as a volunteer worker, having worked in Oxfam Hong Kong, St. James Settlement and Heep Hong Society. She is also a volunteer for Carelinks Cadre and Police Handicraft Club.
Her devotion and dedication to work has earned her not only the gratitude of those she had helped, but also the praises and respect of her superiors and colleagues.
A professional role model
Personnel Services and Staff Relations Chief Superintendent Lam Man-sai has a high opinion of WSGT Lee's work. She said: "I can feel Connie's drive in and commitment to life. Over the past two years, I had gone to hospitals to visit officers with her. Her care and help not only touched her colleagues but also impressed me a lot. When I learned she is going to retire, I was worried that the Force would lose a dedicated officer. So I invited her to serve as Voluntary Care Ambassador, a post tailor-made for her, in WSG. With a great passion for what she has done in the Force, she did not hesitate in promising to come back to work as a volunteer after retirement."
Senior Superintendent (Staff Relations) Mariana Cheung said: "Connie has a big heart and is willing to help people as much as she can. She gives all of herself no matter how big a problem is. She is our guardian angel and we call her 'Angel Connie'."
Former Deputy Commissioner Yam Tat-wing, on learning "Angel" is retiring, told OffBeat: "Connie is experienced in dealing with all kinds of welfare matters. She has a big heart, willing to sort out problems for her colleagues and offer timely help. She is the angel of the Force."
Quoted a Chinese Taoist saying to describe his high regard for WSGT Lee, Senior Police Clinical Psychologist Eddie Li said: "The saying that water benefits all things is the best description of her professional dedication. Helping many officers or their families, Connie is seen everywhere like a flowing river, giving support to different practical issues. She is willing to get into the different situations that many people would like to avoid. It is not easy to be 'content with the places that all men disdain'."
Echoing Mr Li's feelings about WSGT Lee, Senior Force Welfare Officer Ricky Kwan said: "With enthusiasm and professionalism, Connie has set a good example to her colleagues in WSG. She is the icon of WSG."
WSGT Lee finds it hard to leave the Force. Accepting the appointment as Voluntary Care Ambassador, she noted: "I've spent most of my life in the big family of the Force. My life has been enriched with what I have experienced and witnessed in the Force, and with the training and development given to me. I have so many things to be grateful for. My retirement is just nominal and I will go on serving the Force as a volunteer."
"Thirty-seven years have passed in no time. I have witnessed the Force ever improving to become one of the best police forces in the world, with good internal communication and mutual care as well as fairness and impartiality. My colleagues in WSG are dedicated to serving the Force and its members. The praise and good reputation WSG has earned are largely due to their hard work," WSGT Lee concluded.
WSGT Lee's husband is also a retired sergeant and her younger son joined the Force in 2008.
Assistant Commissioner (Personnel) Chau Kwok-leung and 'Angel Connie' visit a centre of Heep Hong Society
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