Comment piece, Don McClumpha
Just like that, another ICAP Charity Day has been and gone. On December 10, 2019, ICAP held its 27th annual global Charity Day welcoming charities and their celebrity ambassadors through our doors, and onto the broking floor where they assisted brokers in closing deals to help raise as much money as possible for their respective charities. This year, I’m delighted to say, ICAP Charity Day raised an impressive$6 million globally, bringing the total amount raised to approximately$190 million since the first ICAP Charity Day in 1993.
For those of you who aren’t aware, each year the ICAP business donates 100% of the revenues and its brokers’ commissions generated on one day to a variety of causes around the globe.The day is great for morale, the atmosphere is fantastic with employees dressing up and uniting to raise money for charity.In the APAC region, we welcomed fabulous guests and supported 28 charities across seven nations.In Singapore, we were joined by the famous faces of actor and singer William So, FLY Entertainment Artistes Constance Lau and Adele Wong, celebrity aesthetician Dr Georgia Lee, and actor and model Paul Foster. Five excellent charitable organisations were selected to benefit in Singapore, including Down Syndrome Association, KKH Health Endowment Fund, Lions Home For The Elders, Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) and The Singapore Repertory Theatre.
Months of planning and preparation goes into making ICAP Charity Day the spectacular event it is, anticipation and excitement builds among clients, charities and employees alike, but once that final trade is agreed and the last celebrity leaves the building the day doesn’t just end, oh no, that’s when the real work begins.
ICAP’s donations enable charities to fund and develop projects and programmes that make a real difference in the areas, and to the people, who need it the most.In Bangkok, we are supporting World Vision Foundation of Thailand (WVFT). WVFT is a humanitarian children’s charity whose aim is to protect children suffering from poverty, conflict and disaster or difficult circumstances which leave children living in fear of hunger and exploitation, for example. A donation from ICAP Charity Day will support some of Thailand’s most vulnerable children with opportunities to access education, learning resources, libraries and a safe place to live – it’s truly inspirational.
Australian based foundation, Top Bloke’s ‘Junior Top Blokes’ programme is dedicated to tackling mental health issues within young men. Through peer-led mentoring and community leadership programs, young men develop positive decision-making skills, decreasing their risk-taking and anti-social behaviour while developing personal qualities of integrity and self-respect.
Many of the 100 charitable organisations we have supported in 2019 focus on the issue of social mobility. In keeping with the company’s overall CSR strategy, ‘A Voice for All’, we firmly believe that everyone should be given a chance to succeed in life whatever their background or circumstances. As ICAP is part of TP ICAP group, the world’s largest interdealer broker, we feel it is our duty to support the communities in which we operate and help support the next generation – who knows; they may end up becoming brokers!
This is why we encourage our employees to volunteer throughout the year. In Singapore, where I am based, we spend time getting to know the charities we will be supporting in upcoming Charity Day’s as it shows our people why we are supporting the charity and how the money we raise will help them achieve their goals. In October, twelve employees visited KK Women’s and Children hospital dressed as princes and princesses with the Kidz Horizon Appeal. We surprised the children staying at the wards and distributed goodie bags, as well as speaking with nurses and parents and understanding how important this faculty is in offering the children and parents relief and support.
Our Bangkok office participates in an annual volunteering day where the entire office takes part in an event. In 2018, they visited Takopid Thong School, a Border Patrol Police School in SuanPueng, Ratchaburi Province. The school cares for 220 students ranging from three to eleven years old, with a large percentage of pupils coming from extreme poverty or dysfunctional backgrounds such as orphanages. During the visit, ICAP Thailand donated food, sporting equipment, school stationery, cooking utensils and agricultural tools as well as personal items.
Over the years,we have experienced great success stories with the charities and projects we’ve supported all over the APAC region. In 2015, we supported the Bone Marrow Donor Programme from the funds raised in Singapore. On World Marrow Donor Day, fifty human statues took centre stage on Orchard Road to raise greater awareness of this issue and to represent the average number of patients at any one time. The day played a crucial role in educating the public to sign-up as bone marrow donors with the event gaining extensive media coverage, which led to 700 new donor sign-ups.
We supported Hong-Kong based charity ‘Operation Breakthrough’ in 2014, which uses sport as a means to help, rehabilitate and positively reinforce young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. The money raised helpsto fund football, cricket and dragon boat programmes, as well as an apprenticeship programme and sports forum, ‘Sport Can Change Lives’. These programmes opened up space for young people to develop their skills for the future, subsequently helping to fight crime and juvenile delinquency. These programmes are now voluntarily run by serving and retired police officers and assisted by social workers.
Funds from ICAP Charity Day 2012 enabled Shanghai Adream Charity Foundation to help build five new Adream learning centres in underserved semi-rural and rural Chinese provinces; benefiting over 6,000 students. The learning centres contained multimedia classrooms and were equipped with books, coloured movable tables and chairs, networked computers, projectors and LSC screens. The designs were contemporary and created a vibrant learning environment. Our donations and support also helped to develop the Adream Teacher Incentive Plan, Adream Salon and Adream Staff Incentive Plan and Administration cost all helping improve the quality of education in China.
ICAP Charity Day is so much more than one day; it’s supporting long-term projects that change the lives of so many people around the world for the better. It’s a global workforce that wants to engage and be involved in giving back too and helping their local communities, and when you look at it like that, the work never stops, and I for one am proud to be a part of ICAP Charity Day.