Operation Santa Claus 2006 Reaches New High With Over HK$16 million of Charity Funds Raised

Operation Santa Claus 2006, co-organized by Radio Television Hong Kong & the South China Morning Post, raised a record-breaking amount of HK$16,012,598 for 27 beneficiaries in Hong Kong. The closing ceremony of the event was held today at Island Shangri-La Hotel to celebrate the culmination of the year-end campaign.

The guests of honor, the Wife of the Chief Executive Selina TSANG, the Honorary Patron of the campaign, Director of Broadcasting CHU Pui Hing and SCMP Editor-in-Chief Mark CLIFFORD were invited to reveal the final figure by launching a video with people from different walks of life displaying the result together. Guests and representatives of the beneficiaries also shared their feelings about the campaign and made an appeal for the needy. Attending guests included also the Director General of Invest Hong Kong, Mike ROWSE, Legislators Fernando CHEUNG, Alan LEONG and representatives of corporate donors and beneficiaries.

Since its establishment, Operation Santa Claus has raised more than 104 million dollars for many charities in Hong Kong to help them pursue their work (including 9 million for tsunami victims in 2004). For seven weeks of the campaign this year, community and donor events gathered hundreds of individuals in an effort that showed Hong Kong’s solidarity towards the needy. These include not only sports competitions, such as the Five-a-side football tournament, Wing Ding Squash tournament and golf competitions, but also the Santa Hash, a motorcycle toy ride, treasure hunt and musical performances by the Hong Kong Singers and various choirs. A range of charity sales – from coffee to teddy bears also helped fill in the coffers.

Twenty-five major donors joined this year’s campaign, including five corporate donors that raised more than HK$1million – Cathay Pacific ($3 million), Merrill Lynch ($1.5 million), Credit Suisse ($1.3 million), Morgan Stanley ($1 million) and JP Morgan ($1 million). The campaign was also well-supported by over 100 small and medium-sized corporate donors as well as 25 schools. Individual donors responded generously and the amount of in-kind donations collected (e.g. toys, book, basic necessities and food) was also impressive.

Operation Santa Claus 2006 Closing Ceremony was broadcast live on RTHK Radio 3 AM 567, FM97.9 Happy Valley/ Jardine’s Lookout/ Parkview Corner, FM 106.8/HK South, FM107.8/ Tseung Kwan O/ Tin Shui Wai .Web surfers could view the web cast version of the closing ceremony on the official Operation Santa Claus website (www.rthk.org.hk/special/santa2006 and osc.scmp.com) on the following day.

For more information, please contact: Teresa Cheng, CCU, RTHK 2339 6573 / 6376 3930