October 20, 2005
HONG KONG, 20th October 2005: In the run up to its gala benefit dinner on 4th November, the organizing committee announced that it has raised over HK$4 million (US$512,000) for Habitat for Humanity Hong Kong (HFHHK) to date.
Major donors, including Piaget, The Coca Cola Company, Citigroup, Dow China, PMI Foundation, Shangri-La Asia and Kerry Properties, are lending their support to provide better housing for the poor in Hong Kong, rural China and elsewhere in the Asia-Pacific region, including those hit by the 2004 tsunami and the recent earthquake in Pakistan.
The gala event sponsored by Piaget at the newly-opened Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, will celebrate HFHHK's inaugural year in Hong Kong and raise additional funds for better housing for the needy.
Turning Dreams into Reality: members of the HFH Hong Kong benefit committee
The fundraising effort was inspired by Irene Chu who helped launch the Benefit Committee with Jenny Tsun.
The Committee is co-chaired by Yumiko Kuok Honda and Stacey Morse.
The theme of the exciting evening is "Dream and Reality" and the program has been organized by a production team headed by Debbie Ng.
There will be performances by celebrity singers, professional Latin Dance Champions, a jewelry watch show featuring Piaget's new collection and clothing by Dunhill, an Instant Win Raffle and a live automobile auction for a luxury BMW 750il
"The generous support we have received thus far from communities and businesses around the world including Hong Kong has enabled Habitat for Humanity to build more than 200,000 homes," said the group's Chairman, Darwin Chen. "This means that, worldwide, the organization has improved the living conditions for one million people"
Attending the gala ball will be Habitat for Humanity's new chief executive officer Jonathan Reckford who will be on his first overseas trip since taking on the post in September
Habitat for Humanity has committed an initial US$250,000 to provide technical assistance and support to partner organizations responding to the earthquake in Pakistan, and is seeking to raise up to US$1 million for reconstruction.
Habitat will work with partners to assess damage, rebuild and repair homes and develop building centers to help put the millions of people displaced by the earthquake back into homes.
Habitat for Humanity is currently undertaking on an ambitious program to assist 35,000 families stricken by last December's deadly tsunami. Projects underway in India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Thailand involve building, repairing and renovating homes, as well as operating building and training centers where local people can learn construction-related skills and earn much-needed money.
Before HFHHK was formally established in January, the Habitat flag was being flown by Hong Kong International School which operates a student-run Habitat club. Last year, the school sent the first team of volunteers to China to build in a village in Yunan. Habitat's China program has recently been extended to Guangdong and Guangxi.
Next year, HFHHK (www.habitat.org.hk ) will upgrade and introduce safety measures in flats within Hong Kong; many of these shelters are occupied by elderly people living on their own yet the properties lack working plumbing or electricity.