The COVID-19 pandemic outbreak has brought a tremendous impact on the Hong Kong economy and even the livelihood of the underprivileged. The unemployment rate has soared to 6.1%, while the rate of some industries such as retail, accommodation and food services even hits 14.4%.
PARKnSHOP Hong Kong has applied the second phase of the Employee Supporting Scheme (ESS), and its proposal with measures to give back to the underprivileged has also been accepted by the Government. PARKnSHOP will distribute HK$200 food coupons to each beneficiary, including the low-income family, elderly and disabled persons. It is estimated that over 200,000 people will be benefited.
Malina Ngai, Group COO of A.S. Watson Group and CEO of A.S. Watson (Asia & Europe), said, “During the pandemic, the surging unemployment rate affected the livelihood of the underprivileged. We hope to spread our love and care to 18 districts in Hong Kong by giving out food coupons valued at over HK$40 million. We would like to thank 20 NGO partners for helping us identify people with most urgent needs in a very short time and distribute the food coupons to them in October.”
As no registration is required, PARKnSHOP’s NGO partners will identify the beneficiaries based on individual need and then distribute the food coupons starting from early October. Our NGO partners include: Hong Kong Young Women’s Christian Association, Food Angel, Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui Welfare Council, Yang Memorial Methodist Social Service, Evangelical Lutheran Church Social Service of Hong Kong, Hans Andersen Club, Hong Kong Children & Youth Services, Hong Kong Christian Service, Hong Kong Family Welfare Society, Hong Kong Federation of Handicapped Youth, Hong Kong PHAB Association, HK Single Parent Association, InspiringHK Sports Foundation, St. James’ Settlement, The Hong Kong Society for Rehabilitation, Sheen Hok Charitable Foundation, Hong Chi Association, Dialogue in The Dark Foundation, Helping Hand, The Hong Kong Alzheimer’s Disease Association, Yan Oi Tong, Tung Wah Group of Hospitals, Baptist Oi Kwan Social Service, Pok Oi Hospital, Rehabilitation Alliance Hong Kong, Po Leung Kuk and The Salvation Army. PARKnSHOP will continue to work with NGO partners to have the food coupons delivered to the people in need.
Yvonne Yeung, Chief Executive of Hong Kong Young Women’s Christian Association, said, “Many underprivileged and low-income families lost their jobs amid the pandemic, resulting in rising demand for financial and living assistance. Thanks to PARKnSHOP, it has already been providing daily supports to the elderly in different districts. This new plan will further cover all the needy other than the elderly across 18 districts, supporting the beneficiaries with love and action.”
Gigi Tung, Founder of Food Angel, said, “PARKnSHOP has always been our important and reliable long-term partner. The pandemic has made this year’s food collection more difficult. Our sincere appreciation to PARKnSHOP for organising large-scale food donation activities via its network every year, in addition to donating surplus food daily. This year’s event has raised more than HK$800,000 to buy food ingredients for Food Angel. We are so grateful that PARKnSHOP makes good use of subsidy from ESS Programme on alleviating the plight of people in need via the distribution of food coupons.”