Building a Better Tomorrow, Today
A resounding affirmation for CapitaLand’s corporate social responsibility initiatives in China
Issue: Jan 2011
CapitaLand’s Hand in Hand 20.10 Campaign which brought 2,010 children to the Shanghai World Expo and its long term commitment to the China local society led to its winning of the “China Best Corporate Citizen” award for the third year running
For the third year running, CapitaLand China was awarded “China Best Corporate Citizen” in recognition of its excellent corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices in China in 2010. This award is presented by the China Committee of Corporate Citizenship and CCTV 2.
The China Committee of Corporate Citizenship is a nationwide non-governmental organisation officially approved by the Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs aimed at fostering the development of corporate citizenship and corporate social responsibility in China. CCTV is the nation-wide television broadcaster in China. This award is coveted by hundreds of companies in China every year. After three rounds of judging, CapitaLand China is one of the top 76 companies to receive this award this year.
CapitaLand pays it forward through a systematic approach that ensures all CSR efforts come to fruition. The company set up a CSR department responsible for all its CSR operations in China and took a step further to encourage active staff participation in community programmes by providing three days of volunteer service leave annually. CapitaLand also established a philanthropic arm, CapitaLand Hope Foundation, five years ago, through which the Group channels up to 0.5% of its yearly net profit for its philanthropic donations. Above all, the leadership at CapitaLand has an unwavering conviction of the group’s philanthropic focus.
All roads may lead to Rome, but the initial choice in focusing its CSR efforts on underprivileged children was not an easy one.
“We believe a company’s strength is limited, so we should be devoted to an area to help as many beneficiaries as possible,” said Jason Leow, CEO of CapitaLand China. “CSR is actually not only about charity but also all aspects of the society such as environment protection, aging issues of the population, heritage conservation and cultural inheritance. Hence, selecting the path to take was a challenge when we started our CSR programme.”
With an eye on the future, the picture became clearer for CapitaLand.
“Among all the issues, we believe children are the most essential part of the society and helping underprivileged children is important to the development of local society. That’s why we established our CSR brand ‘Building for Tomorrow' in China, as a platform to help underprivileged children,” shared Leow.
(left) China Best Corporate Citizen Award Ceremony (right) CapitaLand China’s “China Best Corporate Citizen” award in 2010
Bringing Hope to the Little Ones
Once the target was clear, much effort was subsequently ploughed into programmes that addressed the education, shelter and healthcare needs of underprivileged children, particularly in the rural parts of China.
To date, CapitaLand has actively volunteered and donated a total of RMB 8.53 million to build 15 CapitaLand Hope Schools in Yunnan, Sichuan, Guangdong, Inner Mongolia and Zhejiang province. Teams of CapitaLand staff volunteers also regularly take part in teaching expeditions and visit the schools to help in whatever ways they can. In 2010, CapitaLand organised the Hand in Hand 20.10 campaign, bringing 2,010 underprivileged children including students from its hope schools to visit Shanghai World Expo. These children were led by public and staff volunteers during the trip. The impact of all these initiatives has been visible.
“After all these years, we see a great improvement in both the education and living conditions of our children beneficiaries. It gives us confidence in all our efforts to continue supporting the children in these areas,” said Leow.
In recognition of its continuous contribution to Project Hope, CapitaLand China was recently awarded “Honourable Partner for Project Hope” by China Youth Development Foundation, at the 20th anniversary of Project Hope.
CapitaLand has 15 CapitaLand Hope Schools in China as it believes that education is key to a brighter future for the children
On top of that, CapitaLand China was also presented the “China Charity Outstanding Contribution Award” by China Charity Foundation in 2009, in appreciation of its continuous support and donation to local society.
Awards aside, the public’s response to CapitaLand’s CSR efforts have also been a great source of encouragement.
“We are glad to find that the local community is responding to our CSR initiatives. We have received much positive feedback from the community. The feedback enables us to improve our programmes to meet the needs of the local community from time to time. The public’s enthusiasm towards our CSR initiatives also gives us great confidence to carry on and build a better future for the children,” said Leow.
Building a Sustainable Future through Strong Partnership
CapitaLand’s CSR initiatives also include sustainable environmental practices as well as culture exchange and inheritance, fostering a meaningful partnership with China in the process.
The group has sponsored numerous cultural performances and facilitate collaborative performances to promote healthy cultural exchanges between Singapore and overseas communities. And as a testament of its long-term commitment to China, CapitaLand has pledged a conservation donation to support a 10-year collaborative programme to promote giant panda conservation.
All its CSR efforts point to CapitaLand’s credo of ‘Building People’. Its commitment to be a good corporate citizen wherever it operates is evident from the awards it has received and even more so, from the smiles it has brought to all those who have benefitted.