Why this is material to us
Giving back to society has long been an important part of OCBC’s corporate culture. We recognise that our wellbeing is intrinsically linked to that of society. By engaging and supporting the communities where we operate, we can help to shape a more prosperous and sustainable future for all of society.
Across our core markets, we are committed to supporting the underserved in the community. Leveraging on the resources of the Bank, we seek to address challenges in society and meet critical unmet needs. Our #OCBCCares Programme, carried out across all our markets, continues to spearhead our efforts to give back to the community. On top of providing crucial funding to support various causes, we also encourage our employees to contribute their time and skills through various volunteering opportunities. We focus our efforts to make a difference through targeted programmes in four thematic areas, in line with our commitment to the SDGs:
- Families: Supporting cohesive and healthy communities.
The Elderly: Meeting the health and social interaction needs of an ageing population.
Persons with Special Needs: Encouraging social inclusion and acceptance.
- Environmental Sustainability: Promoting environmentally-responsible behaviour and reducing carbon emissions as part of our climate action strategy.
Virtual Volunteering During Covid-19
In April 2020, we were informed by our charity partners that all face-to-face volunteering had to be discontinued. To overcome this barrier, our employees came up with the idea of virtual volunteering, leveraging technology to have conversations with beneficiaries in real time and provide emotional support as they struggled with anxiety, isolation, boredom and frustration during the pandemic. One group of volunteers used storytelling and acting to remind children to wash their hands constantly during the pandemic. This crisis pushed us to find innovative ways for employee volunteering, as well as pivot quickly to meet newly-emerged needs.
More than $1 million Donated to Help Families and Migrant Workers Affected by Covid-19
In response to the pandemic and its economic impact, OCBC Bank and our staff donated $1,225,000 to support 1,000 needy Singaporean families and 55,800 migrant workers. The Singaporean families received $800 each in supermarket vouchers to enable them to obtain necessities such as fresh food, stationery and medicine, helping to tide them through till the end of 2020. Migrant workers living in nine dormitories across Singapore also received support during their period of isolation. We provided a range of supplies ranging from familiar foods to basic necessities, and additional personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies.
Singapore’s First Community Shop for Needy Families
We contributed $300,000 over the next five years to set up the Food from the Heart (FFTH) Community Shop@ Mountbatten, providing food supplies to almost 500 needy families. The shop operates on a shop-for-free concept, allowing beneficiaries to choose 12 food items from the shelves each month instead of receiving standardised food packages from charities. This helps address the mismatch between donated food and what beneficiaries need and reduces food waste.
Why this is material to us
Creating inclusive economic growth over the long-term is imperative for sustainable development. As a bank, to build and maintain public trust, we must be transparent about the value we create and how this is distributed to our stakeholders.
In addition to providing financial solutions, our main economic contributions arise from compensation to our employees, taxes to the authorities, retained earnings and dividends to our shareholders.
We also prioritise sourcing from local suppliers to support the economy in our core markets.