Mr. Chien Shih 施乾先生 1899-1944

 

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By Stephen Chen 陳中潔 Posted to the Taiwanese Site!


Mr. Chien Shih 1899-1944

The Pioneer of the Taiwanese Humanitarian 台灣人道主義的先驅

Mr. Shih was born in Tam-Sui (淡水.) Graduated from Taipei Engineering Institute (台北州工業學校) in 1917, Shih soon was employed by the Taipei (Japanese) Governor’s administration as a civil engineer, a job envied by many. He could have simply lived a very comfortable life with newly wedded wife in 1922. Yet he eventually chose to establish a house called Love-Love Home (愛愛寮) accepting the beggars/panhandlers all over the northern Taiwan.

In order to provide more information to the public, Shih had published four books about the beggars – [Who Are the Beggars] [The Elimination of the Beggars] [The Life of the Beggars] and [Introduction to the Beggars Elimination Association] 《乞食是什麼》《乞食撲滅論》《乞丐社會的生活》《乞丐撲滅協會--宣言, 要旨, 規約.》 His efforts had made a big wave that his stories were reported by a famous Japanese writer that led to the special award by the Japanese emperor in 1928.

Shih’s children also voluntarily stayed in Love-Love House and helped those less fortunate people back on their feet by educating them and farming skills. It was not uncommon to see the House hosted more than 200 beggars lived and worked together with Shih and his family. The first sight (or smell) of the House may not be pretty, but the warmth and love, though invisible, was overwhelming.

Shih’s wife died prematurely in 1932. In 1934 Shih married to Kyomizu Teruko (清水照子) - a Japanese lady who had devoted all her life to help the beggars long after Shih suffered a critical stroke and passed away in 1944.

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