Operation Santa Claus
Jointly organised by the South China Morning Post and RTHK since 1988, Operation Santa Claus is one of the largest charitable donation drives in Hong Kong. By November 2013, it had raised more than HK$211 million for over 190 charitable projects.
Morgan Stanley bosses raise HK$2.5m for Operation Santa Claus
Executives at Morgan Stanley sing their way towards massive HK$2.5 million donation - with some very special helpers
Some of the biggest wheels in Hong Kong's financial world dropped the business talk to join voices with some of the city's youngest cancer patients and sing of the joys of Christmas.
And thanks to fierce sponsorship from colleagues eager to see their bosses singing, the event, together with a cutthroat cake auction, generated one of the largest single donations to the appeal so far - HK$2.5 million.
This was the 10th annual appearance of the Morgan Stanley Directors' Choir to raise funds for Operation Santa Claus (OSC). They were joined on stage last Friday by children from the Little Life Warrior Society, which helps youngsters battling cancer and other serious diseases.
Also joining the ranks entertaining Christmas shoppers in Elements mall in Tsim Sha Tsui were nursery school children from the Hong Kong Society for the Protection of Children and some of the directors' children.
"We're thrilled to be sharing the holiday spirit with the community of Hong Kong in this initiative that allows us to give back," said Chin Chou, chief executive officer of Morgan Stanley Private Equity Asia, who led the choir's performance.
The firm identified Little Life Warrior Society, one of OSC's 18 beneficiaries, as their core charity partner this year, the 25th year of the appeal.
"We met Little Life Warrior through OSC. The campaign has exposed us to charities we might not have been aware of otherwise," Chou said.
Jointly organised by the South China Morning Post and RTHK, OSC is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, and Morgan Stanley has been supporting it for 16 years.
Little Life Warrior Society's honorary chairman Dr Matthew Shing Ming-kong said the partnership was a good match. "Most of our parents are from grassroots. We lacked the network to raise donations, while Morgan Stanley is hoping to give back."
He added that volunteers from the firm had been helping out regularly in the charity's activities. And on the day of their big performance, the staff had thrown a party in the firm's cafeteria for all the little singers.
Shing said. "It's good that they don't have to be stuck in hospital wards all day."
Donations from the firm this year came from staff who pledged funds for their directors to sing in the choir and bids in the cake auction. The five-day auction earlier this month drew vigorous online bidding each day. "We had three to five desserts per day, baked by colleagues across 13 divisions, that employees would bid for," said Caroline Wong, Morgan Stanley Asia Pacific's head of community affairs and marketing.
"Bidding became especially competitive right before the auction closed at 4:30pm as bidders would try to outbid each other in hopes of winning the dessert to share with their teams."
Top offering was the so-called Cookie Monster's Nemesis. It drew the highest bid of HK$57,000.
HOW YOU CAN GIVE
- Donate online by credit card at osc.scmp.com
- Donate at an ATM or at any HSBC branch (account no: 502-676299-001 for SCMP Charities Ltd - Operation Santa Claus)
- You can donate with a cheque payable to "SCMP Charities Ltd - Operation Santa Claus" and mail it to: Operation Santa Claus, Morning Post Centre, 22 Dai Fat Street, Tai Po Industrial Estate, New Territories,
- Donations of HK$100 or more are tax-deductible. If you would like a tax receipt, please send the completed donation form and original bank receipt, with your name, address and phone number, to the above address. Please call 2680 8159 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any inquiries, or visit us online at osc.scmp.com