To alleviate the unprecedented impact from COVID-19 to the local community, DBS Hong Kong today announced a “Care more” initiative, as part of a SG$10.5-million (approximately HK$57 million) regional “DBS Stronger Together Fund”, to provide much-needed support to help the elderly and vulnerable groups, better cope with the pandemic. There are about 1.2 million people in Hong Kong aged 65 or above, of which around 45% live in poverty. The impact of the pandemic and social distancing hit hard on these groups, who often already face isolation and loneliness, and may suffer from various chronic illnesses.
“Many people, especially the most vulnerable, are deeply affected by this humanitarian crisis. We must all work together as one community to take urgent action to provide support and resources where they are most needed. In these unprecedented and uncertain times, we are fully committed in every possible way to do our part to keep our community safe, and help look after those in need. Together, we will get through this, and emerge stronger,” DBS Hong Kong CEO Sebastian Paredes said.
DBS Hong Kong’s support will help Senior Citizen Home Safety Association, a self-financing non-profit organization, increase its Care-on-Call outreach services by more than 20,000 service sessions, including calls and home visits by professional social workers and/or registered nurses, to better address the emotional and physical well-being of the elderly. Senior Citizen Home Safety Association will also benefit vulnerable seniors, with more than 30,000 care and food packs procured from social enterprise Agent of Change, which seeks to help the poor by selling quality foodstuffs and household goods at a low cost.
DBS Hong Kong’s program also includes DBS employees, with a pledge to match every dollar raised by employees for local charity partner Foodlink Foundation, which is working to provide DBS “Care more” Food Packs to help hard-hit individuals and families. In total, DBS Hong Kong employees and the Bank are seeking to provide at least 8,000 DBS “Care more” Food Packs.
“Senior Citizen Home Safety Association is acutely aware of the impact of COVID-19 on the elderly community, as they are under particular threat, both physically and mentally, from the outbreak. As early as February, we started allocating additional resources to drive a special campaign targeting our vulnerable elderly. We are very thankful to DBS, as this timely support will allow us to further extend our elderly care services at this crucial moment,” Maura Wong, Chief Executive Officer of the Senior Citizen Home Safety Association, said.
“Considering the shortage of personal protective equipment is causing anguish in the community, we, at Agent of Change, believe in the power of giving and sharing to raise hope. We are very thankful for DBS’ overwhelming support to social enterprises, as our special ‘HKAddOil’ Box, with anti-epidemic materials, daily necessities, and food, will help bring comfort, confidence and care to the beneficiaries,” Agent of Change Executive Director William Chan said.
“We would like to thank DBS’ commitment and generosity in providing food care packages to the most vulnerable in our community during this unprecedented time. It has been a very challenging environment for charities, and DBS’ support will mean that Foodlink is able to continue to ‘Replace Hunger with a Smile’ by providing those who are most vulnerable to hunger with food assistance. This is a great reminder that we are all human and are all in this together,” Foodlink Foundation Executive Director Robin Hwang said.
DBS Hong Kong has a longstanding history of supporting social enterprises, and already has many community initiatives in place to support impacted individuals and struggling social enterprises.
Sebastian Paredes (left), Chief Executive Officer of DBS Hong Kong, Maura Wong (middle), Chief Executive Officer of the Senior Citizen Home Safety Association, and Aurea Yung (right), Head of Operations, Foodlink Foundation are committed to support community efforts by “Care more” initiative, to provide much-needed support to help the elderly and vulnerable groups, better cope with the pandemic.
DBS is a leading financial services group in Asia with a presence in 18 markets. Headquartered and listed in Singapore, DBS is in the three key Asian axes of growth: Greater China, Southeast Asia and South Asia. The bank's "AA-" and "Aa1" credit ratings are among the highest in the world.
Recognised for its global leadership, DBS has been named “World’s Best Bank” by Euromoney, “Global Bank of the Year” by The Banker and “Best Bank in the World” by Global Finance. The bank is at the forefront of leveraging digital technology to shape the future of banking, having been named “World’s Best Digital Bank” by Euromoney. In addition, DBS has been accorded the “Safest Bank in Asia” award by Global Finance for 11 consecutive years from 2009 to 2019.
DBS provides a full range of services in consumer, SME and corporate banking. As a bank born and bred in Asia, DBS understands the intricacies of doing business in the region’s most dynamic markets. DBS is committed to building lasting relationships with customers, and positively impacting communities through supporting social enterprises, as it banks the Asian way. It has also established a SGD 50 million foundation to strengthen its corporate social responsibility efforts in Singapore and across Asia.
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