OUR STORY

After 50+ collective years working with kids, we couldn’t be more excited to follow our dreams and share our love of education and play.

We really hope that you like what we are aspiring to provide.

CHRIS

Growing up in West Sussex, UK was very different to our life here in HK. I’m the second of 4 kids and spent the majority of my youth either in the pool or on a bike and generally trying to stay out of mischief.  I moved to Hong Kong in 2003 and met my girl soon after. We now have three little Eurasian babies, Jack, Georgia and Jessie who are just awesome!   I am so fortunate to call Hong Kong my home, first as an expat and now integrated into a Chinese family all of my own.

The opportunities in our country are boundless and I’m so lucky to be able share these with every kid (and adult) that I meet through our programmes.  I truly hope you like what we have done and that we can add value to your lives too.

Chris
Backyard Roots Founder 

EMMA

Hong Kong has now been home for over half my life – I love it! The mountains, the beaches, the ocean – I am forever exploring our wonderful city.  Always one for a new adventure, I’ve trekked across Iceland, NZ, to Machu Picchu and up Kilimanjaro (not to mention across the whole of HK too!)

When Chris first floated the idea of setting up the Backyard Gang a few years ago, it filled me with excitement – a great chance to re-create all the memories from our own childhoods, and pass them on to the kids here in HK!  I’m so proud of what we’ve already built and super excited to see where else we can go with it.

Emma
Backyard Roots Co-Founder

TY

I moved to this wonderful city at the age 4, after spending my earliest years barefoot, climbing trees and running around on the plains of South Africa. On arriving in HK and not wanting to lose our connection to nature, my family decided to live on a Houseboat, which is where we settled for the next 15 years – so grateful that I was able to wake up on the ocean every morning!

My curious nature and love for traveling gave me the opportunity to study in the United States where I received my Bachelor of Education. On returning to Hong Kong I searched high and low for a workplace that felt like home- then I found Backyard Gang! My first day with the team brought me straight back to my childhood! The fact that I can relive some of my fondest memories and be privileged to share these with so many little people everyday is an absolute dream.

Can’t wait to meet you!

Ty
Programme Development Manager (Education)

KAT

My childhood memories are full of muddy puddles, my pet dog Scamper and our family caravan in which we spent many adventurous summers. I am very lucky that my life full of outdoor adventure started at a young age, exploring the Scottish, English and French countryside with my two siblings and countless other kids we met along the way.

Fascinated by languages, social sciences and philosophy, I worked hard, earned my Doctorate and got opportunities to venture into the incredible ecosystems across South America, which in turn encouraged me to think about my (our) relationship with the environment.

I moved to Hong Kong in 2019 and was in awe at the thousands of trails running through the country parks, which kept me busy in my free time working as an Educator.  When I heard that Backyard Gang were looking for mud-lovers, it really cemented my stay here in a place that now feels like home. I am super grateful for the chance to work with so many amazing kids, learn more about the local wildlife and do my bit to educate on, preserve and protect the incredible ecosystem in which we all love to play.

Kat
Programme Development Manager 

SALLY

“Outdoor-aholic” is the best word to describe me. Camping, hiking and kayaking are just a few things I do in my free time. I just love being outdoors – come rain or shine, I am always looking for the next adventure!

After graduating with an Early Childhood teaching degree, I did a short stint in an office before I realised that it wasn’t for me and having since joined the BYG team, it is clear that this is where I belong.  I am so excited and happy to wake up every morning, grab my bag and head off to explore nature and inspire the kids to engage their natural curiosity. As a local HK girl, I will be bringing some Chinese language and cultural elements to the Gang too.

My overriding goal is to ensure every adventure we have is awesome, creating memories that will last a lifetime.

See you outside!

Sally
Assistant Programme Manager

KRISTY

Being born in Hong Kong, I have been lucky enough to be surrounded by nature throughout my childhood. With 5 siblings, the Hong Kong country Parks were our playground giving us the space to run, laugh, play and be free.

With a passion for education and exploring new trails, I was very excited when I joined the Backyard Gang as I am able to inspire kids to love the Hong Kong outdoors – it is the perfect job.

Being fluent in Mandarin, Cantonese and English I am cherishing my role to include a multilingual element to the BYG programmes.

Can’t wait to meet you.

Kristy
Assistant Programme Manager