Celebrating Chinese New Year

By PKF Sydney and Newcastle

14 February 2022

PKF Sydney & Newcastle is committed to diversity and celebrating the diverse backgrounds of our team. Chinese New Year is upon us and Li Chen shares with us some of the traditions around this special time for her and her family.

Li Chen is a Manager in our Business Services team. Originally from China, Li first came to Australia at the age of 18 and whilst she had a quick 12-month stint back in her homeland, the lure of Aussie beaches and sunshine was too much and she immigrated here permanently in 2010.

Whilst Australia is now home for Li and her young family, celebrations such as Chinese New Year continue to be very important to her and unbeknownst to many Australians, 31 January signifies a date of celebration similar to 31 December as Chinese New Year’s Eve is acknowledged. On this night, Li and her family will sit down to a special meal.

It is like Christmas dinner, but instead of having turkey and ham, Li will have traditional Chinese food such as roast pork, ginger scallion lobster, poached chicken, steamed fish and much more. Her mum is also making Chinese Lo Bak Go (Turnip Cake) to celebrate. It’s one of the traditional Chinese good luck foods.

“‘Go’ (which means cake in English) is pronounced the same as ‘up’ in Chinese. Having ‘Go’ on Chinese New Year Day means that ‘everything will go up’ – hopefully that’s referring to job promotions, increase in saving account balances, good performance in stock markets, but not the inflation rate.“

Li, will also visit a Chinese temple to wish a healthy and lucky Tiger year. The following day, on 1 February her two young sons will receive hong bao (red pockets) which are small red envelopes filled with lucky money.

The celebrations continue over the coming days and, for Li, are family-orientated with more family dinners and quality time together. In China, these celebrations can continue for 16 days and seven of those days are public holidays!

PKF Sydney & Newcastle is proud of its diverse team and we love to celebrate and acknowledge the traditions that are important to them. You’ll notice that your external email signature salutes Chinese New Year. This will be in place until 15 February.

Pictured: Li Chen and her family.