We focus our community investment activity on education and the environment - the fundamental building blocks for the development of communities. We aim to allocate around 75% of our donations to these two themes.
In 2011, HSBC spent US$96.1 million on community investment activities globally.
Our approach is to partner with world-class charities that are making a difference, and we remain involved in the decisions about how the money is spent. We encourage our employees to get involved in their local communities, and we know that this motivates and engages our people
Example of Community Investment in the UAE and Middle East
HSBC initiated the MENA specific Kids Read program in collaboration with the British Council and the Ministry of Education, to enhance the role of reading in education. We have reached 25,000 students across 13 countries, using the active participation and support of 250 HSBC volunteers.
The program, launched in 2011, was designed to give as many primary school children as possible the opportunity to read and help awaken their enthusiasm to read by making it enjoyable and accessible. Kids Read involves a variety of school activities alongside public activity through community events.
Eco-Schools is an international award program that guides schools to becoming more sustainable and has been adopted in the UK as part of the Government's Sustainable Schools Framework. There are 46 countries around the world that participate in the Eco-Schools program, linking more than 40,000 schools on the path to embedding sustainable and environmentally friendly principles into the heart of school life.
In partnership with the EWS-WWF, schools follow a simple seven-step process which is driven by the pupils - leading an eco-committee who carry out an audit to assess the environmental performance of their school - and, in consultation with the school and local community, determine which environmental themes they want to address and how.
HSBC employees become part of their eco-committee to work with the pupils in achieving their Green Flag status. The idea is for all members of the eco-committee learn more about sustainability together.
Future First was established by HSBC in 2006 and has since provided some of the world's most marginalised and impoverished young people with access to education and life skills, as well as a brighter, better future. Over the last five years, HSBC has spent US$13 million to fund 314 projects across 49 countries, delivering vital support to more than half a million street children, children in care and orphans. In 2011, we pledged US$15 million over the next five years to develop the work of Future First.
In the UAE through Future First funding, we have delivered English language programs and programs on civic engagement to students in the National Charity School, one of the largest and underprivileged schools in the UAE.
JA More than Money
HSBC and JA Worldwide have a long-standing relationship. Together, we have launched a three-year, global program to teach basic financial skills to children. JA More than Money™ expands one of JA Worldwide's most successful elementary financial literacy programs and involves HSBC staff initially in 15 countries including UAE, Oman and Egypt. This strategic commitment is designed to build upon the breadth and depth of HSBC's commitment to financial education and its support for JA Worldwide, known as INJAZ Al-Arab in the Arab World.
JA More than Money™ has been localized to fit with the Middle Eastern culture and teaches students about saving, earning, consciously spending, and sharing money. It also teaches them about starting businesses and career options.
Conservation work on Sir Bu Nair Island
HSBC assists the Emirates Marines Environmental Group (EMEG) to implement ecological monitoring at Sir Bu Nair. Sir Bu Nair Island is under the jurisdiction of the Emirate of Sharjah and is considered one of the most important turtle nesting grounds in the Gulf region. The Group's President, Major Ali al Suweidi, is always keen to point out that not only does Sir Bu Nair look like a turtle from above; the island's beaches serve as a true haven for the creatures.
Last year 324 endangered hawksbill turtle nests were recorded on the island, in addition to two green turtle nests, providing the first contemporary evidence of green turtle nesting in the UAE.
HSBC is the primary sponsor of the Sir Bu Nair project and, through the partnership with EMEG, has played an important role in preserving the UAE's own island paradise.
Wadi Wurayah National Park in the emirate of Fujairah, the UAE's first mountain protected area, is set to undergo a baseline vegetation survey to help further preserve the area's natural biodiversity. The study will be undertaken by Emirates Wildlife Society in association with WWF (EWS-WWF), Fujairah Municipality and is sponsored by HSBC Bank Middle East Limited.
The study will uncover key information regarding the wadi's natural growing trees, map and assess the current vegetation and help EWS-WWF and Fujairah Municipality better understand the value of the vegetation for the species living in the area. Aided by HSBC volunteers, the team will put in place measures to protecting tree saplings.
In March 2009, Wadi Wurayah was declared a Mountain Protected Area by H.H. Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Fujairah following a three year assessment that was carried out by EWS-WWF and Fujairah Municipality, with the sponsorship of HSBC Bank Middle East. In October 2010, due to its biodiversity and permanent water resources, Wadi Wurayah officially joined the list of 1,932 wetlands around the world which are of international importance for biodiversity conservation under the Ramsar Convention.
Funday Sunday is an organized and scheduled calendar of fun events that any child with special needs is welcome to come along to, free of charge. This currently occurs weekly in Dubai and will soon happen weekly in Abu Dhabi. Run by Volunteers in Dubai and supported by HSBC volunteers, this is a great way for many different children from different center's to meet new friends. Volunteers supervise the children and allow them to develop communication skills while having fun.
Ramadan @ HSBC
Ramadan at HSBC is a very special time. Through partnerships with various community partners such as Beit Al Khair and Actioncare, we implement a range of projects throughout the month. From providing care packs to labourers and sea farers to holding iftar programs for children, we aim to give back to various pockets of our community. HSBC also donates to help buy Eid gifts for low income families and our volunteers pack thousands of food boxes to be delivered throughout the UAE. We also choose several labour camps throughtout the UAE where we provide iftar meals for the whole month. In 2012, we provided iftar to 1500 men every day for the month of Ramandan.