Banknote sale benefits Hong Kong charities

HSBC issued 2 million commemorative HKD150 notes to mark the bank's 150th anniversary

Eleven community projects in Hong Kong will benefit from the millions of dollars raised through a special issue of HKD150 banknotes by HSBC. They range from mental health schemes that help young people to an app that monitors air quality.

The bank issued 2 million commemorative notes in Hong Kong in 2015 to celebrate its 150th anniversary, raising net proceeds of HKD477 million (about USD61.5 million) for charity. The notes were offered to the public at above face value, with rarer notes – those with special serial numbers or prefixes – sold at auction.

This unique programme demonstrates our continuing determination to support the development of Hong Kong by addressing important social needs for the community

Now HKD377 million of the proceeds are being distributed to 11 large community projects via the Hong Kong Bank Foundation, which is HSBC’s charitable trust. The remaining HKD100 million is being distributed to smaller charity projects by The Community Chest of Hong Kong, a grant-issuing charity that has served the local community since 1965.

Peter Wong, Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive of The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited, said: “From the first day HSBC opened its doors for business at One Queen’s Road Central, its purpose was very clear: to enable businesses to thrive, customers to prosper and people to fulfil their ambitions. The histories of Hong Kong and HSBC are closely intertwined and we have grown together. This unique programme demonstrates our continuing determination to support the development of Hong Kong by addressing important social needs for the community.”

Among the beneficiaries of the banknote sale are several projects that help young people who are experiencing mental health issues, by offering counselling and educational services. Another project will explore how robots can be used to help school children with special needs to learn more effectively and develop their sensory awareness.

(From left) Rosanna Wong, Helen Wong, John Tsang, Peter Wong and Diana Cesar at the ceremony of the HSBC 150th Anniversary Charity Programme in Hong Kong

Donations will also go to The Senior Citizen Home Safety Association, which is piloting a study to explore how advances in technology can help older people to live independently for as long as possible. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, meanwhile, is working on an app that will deliver personalised, real-time air quality reports.

The money raised by the banknote sale is in addition to a USD150 million fund set up by HSBC in its anniversary year to benefit charities and community projects around the world. The fund will help more than 140 community projects over three years.

Castle Peak Hospital is one of the charities supported by these donations. Watch a film about how it is helping people with mental illness on the HSBC NOW YouTube channel.

Learn more about HKD150 banknote charities.

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