- Established on 8 November 1968, the Chest started fundraising work with three staff members and a target of HK$6 million. Forty-three member agencies were funded in the first year.
For more than five decades, the Chest has achieved many fundraising milestones for the benefit of the community. Take a walk down memory lane, or check out the key milestones in bold.
- The number of member agencies increased to 60. The beneficiaries included 1,000 households who lost their homes to two squatter fires – the assistance was made through the Salvation Army with an allocation from the Chest.
- The number of donors rose to 80,000 in the year, and the Chest launched Dollar-a-Month, a campaign that targeted factory workers.
- The first Hong Kong Island Walk and Kowloon and New Territories Walk was held on 7 February 1971 and 21 February 1971, respectively. The Hong Kong Island Walk attracted 4,622 participants, whereas the Kowloon and NT Walk attracted 7,937 participants. Both walks raised nearly HK$1 million.
- The number of donors grew to over 578,000, and the Chest became a charitable institution on 14 May 1971. Also, an anonymous donor donated 5,600 pounds of spaghetti for allocation by the Chest.
- The year saw the launch of the laisee campaign. It appealed to young people to donate their laisee money for charitable causes.
- The General Reserve was set up to provide for the years when fundraising targets fall short. The number of donors reached one million. The year also saw the first member agency visit to enhance donors’ understanding of the agencies.
- The first New Territories Walk for Millions was held.
- An anonymous donor known as Mr Ten Percent donated a sum equal to 10% of the year’s donations, amounted to HK$1.4 million.
- The Community Chest Night was organised to commemorate the opening of the Convention Centre.
- The number of donors reached 1.5 million, which represented one third of Hong Kong’s population. The Kowloon Walk for Millions, held on 6 March 1977 and attracted 57,000 participants, was listed in The Guinness Book of Records as having the most number of participants in a charity walk event.
- The Chest aided a pioneering minibus service for persons with disabilities. The year also marked the 10th anniversary of the Chest, and the donation figure exceeded HK$20 million.
- The key fundraisers for the year included the first Community Chest Bazaar, Hong Kong Celebrity Relay Walkathon and Dance for a Million.
- The accumulated donation reached HK$100 million. The Hong Kong Celebrity Games was held.
- The Hong Kong Walk for Millions, held on 2 December 1979, raised HK$1.9 million. It was recognised by The Guinness Book of Records as the charity walk event that raised the most funds.
- Other key fundraising events held in the year included Row for Charity, MTR Community Chest Ride for a Million and Charity Car Wash. In addition, the commencement of the Mass Transit Railway service in 1980 helped raised HK$950,000 for the Chest.
- The Chest encouraged member agencies to introduce pilot projects by providing standalone funding for those pioneering services.
- As 1981 was proclaimed as the International Year of Disabled Persons, the Walk for the Disabled was organised. Also, the first Clean for Charity event was held.
- Key fundraising events in the year included the MacLehose Trail Walk, and Shoot for Charity co-organised by the Hong Kong Joint Shooting Council and Rediffusion Television Ltd.
- The number of participating companies in the Employee Contribution Programme increased to 245, and the employee participation rate was over 75%.
- Mr Stan Guignard from Canada donated HK$54,449 to the Chest which was raised from his travels around the world. Key fundraising events in the year included: Pat Sin Range Walk, the first Plant for Charity, Swim for Charity organised by Jardine as part of its 1983 Ambassadors Programme and The Courvoisier Gala Charity Banquet.
- The Island Eastern Corridor Walk on 3 June 1984 broke previous records with the participation of over 98,000 people. Over 180,000 people took part in the Walks for Millions in the year.
- Other key fundraising events included the U.S. Consulate Charity Ball, held at the Hilton Hotel, and The Top Ten Chinese Gold Songs Award Presentation Concert hosted by Radio Television Hong Kong.
- Lasted for 30 days, Swim for Charity attracted 3,200 swimmers, and the distance covered was almost twice around the world. The finale was a celebrity event that brought the whole event to a climatic conclusion. Other key fundraising events included the 24-hour Canon Charity Typing Marathon and an auction of good luck lanterns during the Lunar New Year.
- The Royal Hong Kong Jockey Club pledged to match the Chest donations dollar-for-dollar, with the amount to be used for administrative expenses and capped at HK$10 million.
- The year’s other key events included:
- Bike for A Million.
- Miss Asia Pacific Pageant 1986 organised by Asia Television Ltd and raised funds for the Chest.
- Sales of commemorative first day covers and postcards to mark the opening of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong and to raise funds for the Chest.
- Garden Co Ltd donated HK$600,000 to the Chest in November to commemorate the bakery’s 60th anniversary.
- Launch of the Corporate Contribution Programme; renowned graphic artist Mr Kan Tai-keung designed the Certificate of Appreciation.
- The total donation saw an increase of 20%, and the number of member agencies funded by the Chest reached 100.
- The year’s key fundraising events included: special fundraising initiatives, The World Sings Together record sales, Cartier Charity Sale, a military tattoo and Charity Bowling Tournament.
- The Community Chest Wood was established in Sai Kung Country Park. Commemorative stamps and official first day covers were issued to commemorate the Chest's 20th anniversary.
- The year also saw the Correctional Services Department – Community Chest Day Walk 1988, sales of Tuen Mun Light Rail Opening Commemorative Tickets and Peak Tramways Centenary: Charity Ride.
- The Shing Mun Tunnel Walk for Millions and the first Noonday Gun for the Chest were held.
- The year’s key fundraising events also included the first TV fundraising show produced by Asia Television Limited and charity sales of mooncakes at Wing Wah Cake Shop.
- The year’s donations exceeded HK$100 million. The Kowloon Walk for Millions featured a new route via the new Tseung Kwan O Tunnel.
- The year also saw the charity sales of the gold-plated CD version of Cantonese opera diva Hung Shen-nui’s famous aria, Four Beauties.
- The number of member agencies increased to 120, and the addition of a Gold Flag appeal on Flag Day.
- The year also saw a charity dinner on board the Queen Elizabeth 2.
- Hong Kong Cantopop’s Four Heavenly Kings promoted the Chest’s charity scratch cards.
- The year saw two firsts – the first Dress Casual Day and the first Civil Service Charity Walk.
- The Community Chest 25th Anniversary Gala Evening was held at Government House and raised HK$6.8 million.
- The accumulated total donation reached HK$1 billion. The Chest held the first Community Chest Corporate Challenge and the first Community for the Chest television show on TVB.
- The Chest received the 1995 Asian Management Award in Development Management presented by the Asian Institute of Management.
- The year’s notable events also included fundraising by employees participating in a week of flexi-work hours and the introduction of The Community Chest affinity card.
- The year’s donations exceed HK$200 million; the Chest website was launched.
- Also, the year saw the launch of the Naming Right Scheme – with the support of the Hong Kong Housing Authority (HKHA), a public facility managed by the HKHA could to be named after a donor. To commemorate the handover, five Walk for Millions events were organised in the year, with two held at the Lantau Link and Western Harbour Crossing. Other notable events included a charity dinner commemorated the completion of the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre Extension and the Lantau Link Charity Car Procession.
- The Chest organised 110 fundraising events – the highest number since its founding. The year’s fundraising events included seven Walks for Millions, a charity dinner to mark the completion of the new Hong Kong International Airport, The Community Chest Bauhinia Day and The Community Chest World Cup Soccer Charity Programme.
- The Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC) donated HK$30 million to celebrate the Chest’s 30th Anniversary. The number of member agencies reached 140. The year also saw the launch of two new fundraising initiatives: The Community Chest Charity Golf Day and Skip Lunch Day.
- The Chest leased an office space in Wan Chai from HKJC at a nominal rent. The year also saw the initiation of the Stock Code Balloting for Charity Scheme by Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd and the first Community Chest Green Day.
- Launch of the $10 Donation Drive.
- The Chest managed the Operation UNITE Fund to support families and individuals affected by SARS. In addition, the Chest started accepting online donations. The year also saw the rollout of the New HK$10 Note Charity Collection and Dance for the Chest, which set a new Guinness World Record by having 12,000 people dancing in one event.
- The year saw the setup of The Community Chest Rainbow Fund, as well as the rollout of the New Banknote Charity Collective Sets supported by the three note-issuing banks.
- The year’s key fundraising events included: Real Madrid Asia Tour (HK) Charity Event, The Kowloon Motor Bus Company (1933) Limited 70th Anniversary, West Rail Charity Trial Ride and the first Ocean Park Halloween Bash.
- The Chest held the Hong Kong Disneyland Charity Day and launch of the World’s Biggest Donation Box fundraising initiative.
- Launch of Souvenirs for the Chest.
- The year’s key events included:
- Dress Special Day.
- Celebrities Sing for the Chest.
- New Territories Walk – Deep Bay Link.
- Treasure Hunt Corporate Challenge.
- Special Donation from Acquisition of Hong Kong Dragon Airlines by Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd.
- The Community Chest Green Day Twin Tickets designed by Mr Leon Lai.
- Donations to the Chest could be made at 7-Eleven stores.
- The year’s notable fundraising events included: National Renowned Chefs for the Chest at Sha Tin Racecourse, Hong Kong – Shenzhen Western Corridor Walk and New Territories Walk – Route 8 (Tai Wai to Lai Chi Kok).
- The Chest held a 40th anniversary commemorative fundraising event, and the year also saw the launch of the first red wine-theme fundraising event, The Community Chest Château Latour Evening. Also, the Dress Special Day was promoted with publicity materials designed by a group of young local designers.
- Other notable fundraising events in the year included sales of The Community Chest 40th Anniversary Mini Octopus & Octopus Card – Celebrity Series and the launch of the first Love Teeth Day.
- The Bank of China launched the Caring Hong Kong – A Heart Warming Campaign with a HK$90 million funding. The New Territories Walk took place at Stonecutters Bridge.
- HK$350 million was raised in the year – the highest in the Chest’s history. Other key developments included the launch of the Corporate Volunteer Matching Scheme and school visits. In addition, the Chest opened its Facebook page, YouTube channel and blog to enhance communications with the younger generation.
- The number of member agencies increased to 157.
- The year’s notable fundraising events included: Hong Kong Police Night for the Chest, Race to ICC-100 – SHKP Vertical Run for the Chest and New Banknote Charity Collective Sets issued by the three local note-issuing banks.
- The Chest celebrated its 45th anniversary. Ten videos that featured 10 Chest services were produced to help the public to gain a better understanding of the Chest’s work.
- The year’s notable fundraising events included The Community Chest Wheelock Swim for a Million and The Community Chest BOCHK Cycling Challenge at Eagle’s Nest Tunnel.
- The Coin Collection Programme, launched by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, helped raise funds for the Chest.
- The Chest was entrusted with administering the allocation of HK$100 million from the HSBC 150th Anniversary Charity Programme.
- The number of member agencies increased to 161.
- The Chest allocated HK$50 million to launch a brand new initiative, the Community Housing Movement project. The Community Chest Dress Casual Day celebrated its 25th Anniversary with over HK$19.5 million raised.
- To mark the Chest’s 50th anniversary, the Chest’s board and committee members handed out chocolate gold coins to Hong Kong people while 126 birthday parties were held with member agencies. The Social Innovation in Motion Competition invited tertiary students to propose new services and fundraising ideas for the Chest. In addition, the Chest’s theme song, "Charitable Heart", was rearranged and sung by Vice Patron Mr Leon Lai. Over HK$388 million was raised in the year.
- The year also saw the holding of a gala dinner commemorating the Chest’s 50th anniversary and the organising of The Community Chest 50th Anniversary Walk For Millions at the newly opened Central – Wan Chai Bypass. Also, a special commemorative book, The Community Chest Way: 50 Years of Service in Hong Kong, was published.
- The Community Chest Anti-NCP Rainbow Fund was set up to support those affected by COVID-19. Bank of China (Hong Kong) donated HK$13 million for the provision of COVID-19 care kits for the underprivileged and medical staff. It also offered financial assistance to some victims of the pandemic and their families. The Chest received a HK$468 million bequest from the estate of the late Mr Kam Sik-hung. It was the single largest donation in the Chest’s history.
- HKEX’s Stock Code for Charity Scheme had raised over $1.2 billion for the Chest since its inception. The scheme was updated in the year to mark the establishment of the HKEX Foundation and to support the HKEX Charity Partnership Programme. It continued to partner with the Chest in serving the community. The year also saw the setup of the Social Innovation Fund.
- Due to the pandemic, the year saw also the launch of the first Community Chest Virtual Walk for Millions.
- The Chest provided timely assistance to those affected by COVID-19 through the Pandemic Rainbow Fund. Also, with support by corporate partners, the Chest procured essential anti-pandemic items and distributed them as care kits by member agencies to those in need.
- The Chest embraced the new normal by pivoting to the virtual world. For example, the Virtual Walk for Millions was held to encourage the public to maintain their physical and mental health amid the pandemic, and at the same time raise funds for family and child welfare services supported by the Chest. To continue engage students, virtual talks were organised in place of in-person school visits.