Home>Service> Global Love of Lives Award> 16th Fervent Global Love of Lives Award> Chang Shou-te—Determined Soul
 [Supporter of social justice] 

Breathing means hope.
—Chang Shou-te
 
Chang Shou-te lived a life of turmoil from an early age. 

Following his diagnosis with spinal muscular atrophy at eight, his father died in a car accident two years after. When he was 12, his mother passed away due to complications of diabetes. Four years later, his older brother and his grandmother also left the world. Because of his feeble health condition and the dispersion of his family members, the hospital was like another home to him.

Despite the adversities in life, he remained optimistic and performed well at school. After graduating from Kaohsiung Municipal Nanzih Special School, majoring in computer science, he went to Nan Jeon Institute of Technology and took courses from Kaohsiung Medical University. 

Though confined in a wheelchair and relying heavily on breathing machines, he is as independent as any abled person. 

Knowing what it’s like to be a minority in the society, Shou-te is a social justice activist. He filed petitions and participated in various protests, hoping to diminish discrimination and prejudice in the society. 

Craze for computer 
Shuo-te was immediately mesmerized by the world of technology and digital media when he first laid hands on a second hand computer. 

He was especially grateful to the teachers at Kaohsiung Municipal Nanzih Special School for their guidance. They not only supported his interest in computer science but also helped raise money for him to go on a memorable graduation trip. 

“The happiest time of my life was the time spent in Kaohsiung Municipal Nanzih Special School,” he noted the school’s abundance in resources and teachers’ enthusiasm.

Supporter of social justice
Shuo-te’s passion and thirst for knowledge took everyone by surprise. After high school, he wanted to continue his education and applied for a university out of his hometown Kaohsiung. While moving to the campus in Tainan, he realized the lack of a barrier free environment there. 

Hoping to reduce the time spent in Tainan, he tried to take classes from a university back in Kaohsiung. After being denied inter-school course selection program, he took the initiatives and petitioned to the President and the Ministry of Education. Kaohsiung Medical University later made an exception for him to take courses there.

Many supported Shuo-te’s actions and courage. Some even donated money to fund his breathing machine and expensive medical equipment. 

Shuo-te said he will try to repay everyone’s kindness by fighting for equal rights for minority groups. In 2008, he petitioned to the Minister of Interior face to face on allocating more medical appliance subsidy for the disabled.