During an event calendar of perennial charity auctions, balls and galas that are the core of the Hong Kong social scene, one of the most delicate questions to crop up is: what percentage of a donation is actually going to its rightful beneficiary?
So when an event declares that 100 percent of its donations go directly to charity, we pin it on our “very-interested” board. As such the event, 10×10 (pronounced 10 by 10) is marked on our calendar in bold.
This week, Hong Kong hosts the 10×10 charity cocktail for the second time in Central’s California Tower. An international project that has similar “fun raising” projects around the world, this particular event is presented in the style of … well, a hybrid of reality TV shows Shark Tank (in the US) or Dragons’ Den (in the UK), in which budding entrepreneurs try to win funding from a judging panel. In this 10×10 event, charity representatives speak about their organisation to a panel of judges who jointly decide which one gets a cheque for their worthy cause. The panel asks pertinent questions and raises feasibility concerns that they or the attending audience might have.
This year’s “dragons” – i.e. the judging panel – are: Michelle Chow, a consultant at the international law firm Withersworldwide; Alia Eyres, CEO of Mother’s Choice (and one of the charities supported by last year’s 10×10 event); and John Dawson, best known for his 20-year career at Bloomberg Television where he was a prime-time TV anchor in Europe and Asia. In 2015, Dawson joined Artemis, a leading Hong Kong-based communications consultancy focused on reputation and crisis management, where he is now Partner/Director.
This year, three locally based charities pitch their projects, and they are: Mission for Migrant Workers (MFMW); Society for Community Organisation (SOCO); and Richmond Fellowship of Hong Kong (RFHK).
Mission for Migrant Workers
Established in 1981, MFMW was the first grassroots organisation to serve migrant workers in Hong Kong, including the community of 300,000 domestic helpers then living in Hong Kong. MFMW provides crisis intervention services for domestic workers who are in distress, and gives migrant workers legal advice about their rights, assisting them to recover amounts illegally obtained by dubious employment agencies and/or loan sharks. MFMW also runs Bethune House, a temporary shelter for female migrant workers in immediate need.
Society for Community Organisation (SOCO)
Giving a voice to the voiceless, SOCO was founded in 1972 as a social welfare organisation. Over 1.2 million people live below the poverty line in Hong Kong, and over 580,000 people earn less than $6,000 per month. SOCO advocates change to government policy and provides social services to better the life of the most disadvantaged, including children, elderly and the homeless. Money raised by 10×10 will go directly to SOCO’s Children’s Rights Project which help the 300,000 children in Hong Kong living in poverty, over 20,000 of whom live in “cage” or cubicle homes.
Richmond Fellowship of Hong Kong
Founded in 1984, RFHK helps those suffering from mental conditions, as well as their families. Mental illness in Hong Kong is a significant concern but goes largely undiagnosed because of the stigma associated with seeking treatment and the long waiting times for mental health treatment. Money raised at 10×10 will support its Justone telephone service, which provides both hotline services to members as well as helpful contact with other persons suffering from mental illness, and their caregivers.
Event details are below, so grab your tickets, knowing that every cent you donate will land in worthy hands.
April 27, 2017
California Tower, 21/F California Tower, 30-32 D’Aguilar Street, Central, Hong Kong
Tickets are priced at $1,000