Operation Santa Claus

Swire Properties donates 40th birthday party proceeds to charity

Property company will celebrate 40 years at its Quarry Bay home by throwing a street party, with all the money raised going to charity

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 06 December, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 07 May, 2015, 4:01pm

To celebrate with the neighbourhood it began creating 40 years ago and give something back to the community, Swire Properties will host a charity street party in Quarry Bay on Saturday.

"The party is going to be the biggest and busiest of all these years," says Swire's longest-serving employee, Philip Chan Oi-ki, the general assistant for development and valuations.

He joined the company 36 years ago, the year the first block of the Taikoo Shing development was sold for just HK$200 per square foot. His son joined the company as a clerk several years ago.

Swire Properties' 40th anniversary party on Saturday is meant to express gratitude to its employees and to give the surrounding community a joyful celebration, chief executive Martin Cubbon says.

"I like the notion of having fun while doing some good for the community."

The party will be held in Tong Chong Street - Swire Properties' home and the place where the company started out. The area has been transformed from a dockyard and sugar refinery into one of the city's largest privately owned business districts, with office, retail, hotel and residential properties stretching from Taikoo Place to Cityplaza.

Proceeds from the party will go to Operation Santa Claus, the charity appeal jointly organised by the South China Morning Post and RTHK. This year OSC donations will go to 18 charities that help a wide spectrum of people in need, from children and the elderly to those with mental and physical disabilities.

"OSC is a good umbrella for many charities," says Cubbon. "It's not just about giving money; it wants people to be involved in the process."

The company has a volunteer team that does community work. "I can help people with the skills I know, like teaching elderly people to use computers," says Vincent Lee Wai-bond, a Swire information technology specialist.

He met his wife at the company and they spend time together doing volunteer work. Now they take along their five-year-old daughter to give her a taste of the satisfaction of giving.