Time to get a job or internship!
Summer jobs are a rite of passage for teens that can bring in some much needed extra cash to buy that pair of shoes they’ve had their eye on (preventing them from heading to the bank of mum and dad for a withdrawal!). A job can also help keep teens busy during the summer, allowing some valuable real-world insight with experience they can’t learn in school.
In this city we call home, finding a job as a teen can be easier said than done, as many require fluency in Cantonese (although we found a few that don’t). Either way, we’ve pulled together a list of places with summer jobs in HK to keep your teen busy – whether they just want some extra cash or want to get a head start building a resume. We’ve also provided resources to help find out what will suit them most, and while we focus on mainly summer positions, the good news is a lot of these opportunities can be extended year-round.
Read more: Where Your Teens Can Hang Out This Summer
Typical Summer Jobs
For a lot of us who were raised outside Hong Kong, the first thing we picture when we think of summer jobs is waiting tables or tearing tickets at the local movie theatre. So let’s start with those types of gigs and a few other options available around the city.
Known for its great working environment, Starbucks is a good option for a teen looking for something to do – plus, they’ll learn how to brew a decent cup of coffee (always useful for when mama needs a cuppa at home!). Starbucks in Hong Kong does come with a couple of basic requirements, though. In order to work as a barista for Starbucks you will need to be able to speak Cantonese and you must be 17 or older. If you’re interested in what opportunities Starbucks has to offer, check out its website.
A Hong Kong staple, 7-Eleven is everywhere and it does hire for the summer. Unfortunately, it won’t hire anyone under the age of 18. But if you have an 18-year-old (or a teen home from university) looking for a way to earn some extra cash, 7-Eleven is on the hunt for shop assistants who take care of all the everyday tasks that keep the store running smoothly. Like Starbucks, a command of Cantonese is a must. If interested in 7-Eleven, there’s no need to schedule an interview (although you can apply online if you want), managers will do walk-in interviews at its recruitment centre in Lai Chi Kok (Monday through Friday from 9am until 5pm, except on public holidays). All your teen needs to do is show up at the address below with proof of education and employment history for the walk-in interview.
7-Eleven, 8/F, Saxon Tower, 7 Cheung Shun Street, Lai Chi Kok, Kowloon, Hong Kong, 2299 8150 (recruitment hotline), WhatsApp: 6657 8720, www.7-eleven.com.hk
If your older kid is a little more independent and is obsessed with dogs, they should check out Pawshake – an online community connecting pet owners to pet sitters and walkers. Anyone over the age of 18 can sign up as a sitter by simply filling out its quick and easy online application form. Once approved, you set up your own sitter profile and then it’s up to you to decide what services you want to offer. You’re responsible for finding your own clients and making your own schedule, and you have full control over who you work with. It also has a handy app for your phone to help you manage your schedule and stay on top of your commitments. As summer jobs go, this one is paw-fect!
Broadway Circuit Cinemas
Does your teen love movies? Then this summer job is a great option. Broadway Circuit Cinemas is looking for teens in Form 5 or above (the equivalent to grade 11 in US schools) to be Cinema Service Assistants (both full and part-time) – though there are other opportunities as well. The job requires a command of both Cantonese and Mandarin (along with English, of course). The best part? Employees get free movie tickets! If your teen is interested, they can email their resume, expected salary and date available to [email protected].
If none of the above options appeals to you or your teen, check out the below opportunities. These summer jobs are more focused on gaining experience than anything else and, as such, most of them are unpaid.
Justice Centre’s Young Advocates Programme
The Justice Centre runs the Young Advocates Programme every summer for students ages 15 to 18 who are enrolled in local Hong Kong-based programmes. The three-week programme is aimed towards students who are interested in law, human rights, government, social policy and NGO management. Students are provided with the opportunity to engage in external meetings and events, learn about human rights campaigns, participate in a variety of legal tasks, and even work on their own projects. If your teen is interested in a law career, this is a must.
Kids4Kids hosts a range of volunteer or internship activities for kids throughout the year, but come summertime it also has a series of internships ranging from two to eight weeks from June to August. Aside from regular operational tasks, teens will have the opportunity to help out in a variety of areas from editorial tasks to translating to graphic design. Roles include communication, graphic art and design, development and video production. If your teen is interested in the organisation, there are a host of volunteer opportunities over the summer, and they can also check out the Advocates Leadership Team, which is a group of 15 youth volunteers chosen to work with Kids4Kids on community projects that they themselves organise throughout the year.
Crossroads Student Internships
If your teen wants to make a difference in his or her community, look no further. The Crossroads student internship allows students the chance to work in an English-speaking environment doing a variety of things such as preparation of goods for distribution, shipping, computing, and working in its fair trade marketplace and café. They’re looking for college or university students aged 17 and up with a variety of skills (apply via the online application form), and each participant will receive a certificate and a reference letter from Crossroads on completion of the programme. It’s a six-week, full-time programme, running from Tuesday through Saturday, 10am to 5pm.
Music for Life
Music for Life is a local organisation that uses music therapy to improve physical and mental wellbeing. It sees patients whose problems range from mental health issues and dementia to pre and postnatal care. It offers non-paid internships for students who wish to learn more about music therapy. The job is mostly admin work, but those who are accepted can sit in on music therapy workshops. Students must be 16 or older, available for at least two months, have basic computer skills and be able to both read and write in Cantonese and English (Mandarin would be beneficial as well). Bonus points if your teen has basic video editing skills. Preference is usually given to those of university level, but the organisation is open to hiring high school students as well. Applications for the 2019 period may have already closed, but it’s always a good idea to reach out and find out more information.
Faust International Youth Theatre
Faust International Youth Theatre is a well-known local Hong Kong organisation which offers challenging and creative workshops for students who want to learn more about theatre. It runs internships year-round in the form of Student Leaders (for students ages 16 and up) and Assistant Leaders (for students ages 18 and up). During the school year, these positions are primarily Saturday morning and afternoon jobs. Over the summer, it hires students as theatre assistants for its week-long summer theatre programmes. These summer jobs require a full week of work (Monday to Friday, 10am to 12:30pm, or 2pm to 4:30pm) and end with an open session for families and friends. Check out its website for more details. Interested candidates can email [email protected] with their CV and a cover letter.
Faust International Youth Centre, 5/F, Nan Dao Commercial Building, 359 & 361 Queen’s Road Central, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, 2457 9799, 2547 9114 (direct line for recruitment opportunities), [email protected], www.faustworld.com
Resources for Teens Looking for Jobs
The summer jobs above can give your teen a good starting point when looking for vacation work, but there are plenty of other opportunities as well. Here are a couple of resources to help your child out:
Youth Employment Start (Y.E.S.)
Y.E.S. provides one-stop, personalised advisory and support services on employment and self-employment for people ages 15 to 29. Services include: career planning, pre-employment training (for people who feel they need more skills) and help with job hunting. It also provides in-depth information for job seekers about their rights and things to look out for when applying for jobs. It has two membership types: regular (for normal job seekers) and business (for young people who have registered their own business and are looking for extra resources). Membership is free, and it’s a great all-round resource for someone who’s not sure where to start.
Y.E.S., Suites 8-11, Level 42, Office Tower, Langham Place, 8 Argyle Street, Mong Kok, Hong Kong, 2111 8533
Hong Kong Teen PT Facebook Group
If time is an issue (your child can’t commit to the whole summer) or your kid wants to find some odd jobs during the school year, this Facebook page may help them out. Hong Kong Teen PT Facebook Group was created just for teens who are looking for part time jobs, especially those who have a tougher time finding work elsewhere.
This group works both ways: teens who are seeking jobs can post, listing what skills they have and what kinds of jobs they want to do; and people looking for help can post in search of part-time workers. People have listed a wide variety of jobs (and summer jobs) from babysitting and tutoring, to things as complex as web design and help with event coordination. If you spend some time browsing, you’re bound to find something that interests your teen. Parents are encouraged to join as well so they can monitor who contacts their kids.
Hong Kong Teen PT Facebook Group, join online
Useful Job-Hunting Sites
There are also a few online job hunting sites where kids can search for English-speaking summer jobs. Many of them allow you to input your email and get custom emails sent to you when job openings are listed. Here are a few that have many types of postings, including tutoring and internships:
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on 30, April 2018 b