Saturday, October 30, 2004

New GrantCraft Guide

New GrantCraft Guide - to be featured in the next issue of the e-newsletter...

How can grant makers cross the divide between philanthropy and business? Designed for staff of independent and corporate foundations, this guide weighs the case for engaging business, identifies skills for promoting corporate philanthropy, and shares strategies for partnering with and influencing companies.

ICT and Society Research Forum

The first meeting of the ICTSRF was held today as convened by Law Chi Kwong (HKU) and John Fung (ITRC/HKCSS). Here's a quote from John's earlier invitation email:

I am glad to inform you that since last time we spoke/emailed, there has been substantial progress in establishing the research forum on “Information Communication Technology and Society”. The purpose of the forum is to incubate research ideas in relation to ICT and society, an area which is not receiving enough academic attention locally.

There should be research areas that our centre can contribute to - e.g. wider governance issues concerning community informatics, legal environment conducive to information society and civil society development, new forms of social movement and political participation, etc.

Suggested the Forum to pin down the key subject matters in order that scholars and practitioners can readily verify if their own work can tie in well with the interests of the research network.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Adventure Ship 乘風航

Know about the good work of Adventure Ship for a long time, and today I finally had the chance to participate in its buddy program, accompanying a severe grade handicapped boy to our sea adventure...

(see a few photos here)

Also see Mimi in the trip, sadly she has to leave Adventure Ship after serving there for 12 years. I'm sure she's proud of her work, but maybe she needs to take a break after the long service...

Adventure-Ship - Welcome!!!

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Corporate-NGO Collaboration - the Hong Kong Experience

Speaking of corporate philanthropy in Hong Kong, here's is a speech by Bernard Chan which was delivered in the APPC (Asia Pacific Philanthropy Consortium) conference last year.

Mr Terence Yiu has put together a very interesting paper on the situation in Hong Kong, and I don't want to repeat what he says. But I'll give a very brief history just to put everything in context.

Yes that "Terence" is me... should be Terence Yuen of course... my paper can be found here.

Third Sector Landscape Study

So here's the report:

What a big report (400+ pages not counting appendices); spent the whole afternoon just to print it out.

Though not a great report, but must appreciate the efforts put in by the research team. Great effort indeed. It is thankful that our bid (The Asia Foundation) didn't win - there is no way that I can manage this project on my own.

Note: The earlier Golin/Harris Study on Corporate Philanthropy in Hong Kong is still available at CPU's website.
Key findings of the Golin/Harris Study include :-

  • Total charitable contributions amount to about 0.2% of GDP in Hong Kong.

  • Corporate giving in Hong Kong accounts for about 10% of total giving.

  • Guesstimates based on various methods for calculation suggest that corporate giving in Hong Kong currently amounts to at least HK$1.4 billion and probably reaches about HK$2.6 billion.

  • Big companies give more. So do companies with large numbers of staff employed locally.

  • Small and medium sized enterprises give little in cash terms, but are potentially valuable givers in terms of staff volunteer activity.

  • Corporate giving among local companies is growing, especially since 1997 when more people and companies have come to regard Hong Kong as a long-term home.

  • Companies are most willing to give to causes linked with education, the environment, poverty/disabled/the aged, children, and with health and medicine.

  • Companies are least willing to give to causes linked with heritage, religion, culture and sports.

Friday, October 15, 2004

First Meeting of Working Group on NGO Statistics

Held the first meeting today. Good discussion but many suggestions are difficult to follow through. Afterall this is only an exploratory study and we should not aim to achieve too much out of it.

Learnt from Chan Kam Tong (PolyU) that the CPU has released the Third Sector Landscape study at last - I previously thought that it will never be released to the public...

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Asian charitable asset management

Singapore bank first to specialize in Asian charitable asset management

A Dutch private bank in Singapore is the first financial institution in Asia to offer philanthropic asset management services for high net worth individuals. MeesPierson wants to link the region's estimated 3,000 to 4,000 individuals and families with assets of at least $1 million to nonprofit organizations that can use the money. "Asia has more millionaires than any other part of the world. It's easier (for them) to make money than to give it away. So, we're helping them with their philanthropic focus," said Terry Alan Farris, head of MeesPierson's Charity Management, Asia. MeesPierson hopes to tap into the growing number of wealthy families looking for social returns on their investments. The bank also offers asset management services to nonprofit institutions such as UNICEF to help them grow their funds and become more transparent. The bank estimates that nonprofit organizations in Asia hold between $15 billion to $20 billion in assets. Kees Stoute, the bank's managing director of Private Banking, Asia, said the call from the public for more transparency in managing charitable funds has been growing. The bank foresees resistance to this from some wealthy Asians concerned about keeping their donations out of the public eye. But Farris is hopeful their attitudes will change, saying "It's a way to bring family members together in a non-threatening way. In Hong Kong, we had a family whose members haven't talked to each other in years," he said. They ended up meeting regularly to discuss their philanthropic efforts. "There is enough money in Asia to fund Asia, but we need to organize it." (TODAYonline (Singapore), April 2, 2004)

Have Expertise, Will Travel

This is Terry's story on his decision to join the fundraising business in Asia...
Have Expertise, Will Travel
U.S. fund raisers abroad find hot job market, big challenges


Two and a half years ago Terry Alan Farris, a fund raiser at the University of Hawaii´s health-sciences programs, was recruited to head the development efforts at Hong Kong Adventist Hospital.

Although he was daunted by the prospect of uprooting his family, including his wife, who was pregnant with twins, Mr. Farris ultimately decided that the opportunity to work abroad was too exciting to miss. He hasn't had any regrets.

The mix of cultures in his adopted city intrigues Mr. Farris -- and he quickly discovered that he had moved to a land full of fund-raising opportunities. The hospital is on track to raise $2.6-million this year, 10 times the amount raised the year he arrived.

Mr. Farris is part of a wave of Americans whose fund-raising expertise is being sought around the globe as non-profit organizations increasingly seek to raise private funds to bolster their activities and lessen their reliance on government funds. And as more and more countries are creating tax incentives to encourage giving to those organizations, demand for Americans who have experience showing donors tax-savvy ways to give is on the rise.

Although not every overseas fund-raising experience has been as successful as Mr. Farris's, many Americans share his enthusiasm for other shores despite a variety of challenges involving uncooperative boards of trustees and unrealistic expectations of non-profit organizations. (see full article)

Saturday, October 09, 2004

AMPA Reunion at Chi Lin Nunnery 志蓮淨苑

AMP stands for our Advanced Management Programme for Senior Executives on welfare associations. The class has 40 alumni and they have been pondering to establish the AMP Association (AMPA)...

What a great vegetarian meal!! And a good seminar on the development of Social Enterprise in the rehabilitation field...

Moon (Chi Lin) - thanks a lot for arranging the visit and the guided tour...

Friday, October 08, 2004

Meeting with CAFO visitors

Involved in the Social Enterprise study in assisting St James' Settlement who has been commissioned by CAFO (Conference for Asian Foundations and Organizations) to undertake the Hong Kong SE study.

Know about CAFO because of Michael Lai, Danny Yung and Anthony Tsui. I learnt from a source that CAFO may have funding difficulties and hope that they can continue their good work.

The CAFO visitors were in town to hold a preparatory meeting for its coming conference in Taipei next February to examine SE development in this region. Saw some old friends from Taiwan - Andy and Marie from Himalaya Foundation. It's a pity I won't be able to accept the invitation to participate in the Taipei conference next year.

Friday, October 01, 2004

CCSG e-Newsletter Released (2nd Issue)

So here's the second issue after delaying a bit.

No more photo this time so that the email version will not be crushed so easily.