More than HK$15 million (US$1.9 million) was raised for Hong Kong's needy during the 32nd edition of Operation Santa Claus, the annual Christmas fundraising drive organised by the South China Morning Post and public broadcaster RTHK.
This year's fundraiser benefited 13 charities that are directing aid to the city's underprivileged as well as individuals with mental and physical disabilities.
"It gives (RTHK director of broadcasting) Mr Leung Ka-wing and I great pleasure to announce that we have exceeded our donations target in support of our 13 beneficiaries, whose work is vital to Hong Kong and deserve our attention and contribution," Post chief executive officer Gary Liu said.
"We look forward to many more years of serving our community through OSC. Together, we will elevate this city and make a lasting difference."
RTHK's Leung echoed the sentiment, saying hardships currently facing the city have not dimmed its spirit.
"I couldn't be prouder of our wonderful community and my colleagues and friends at RTHK and the SCMP for the amazing results they have achieved in three short, difficult months. As you're just about to find out, Hong Kong's spirit is as strong as ever," Leung said.
While the annual closing gala, which was to have been themed "From Hong Kong With Love", was cancelled because of the coronavirus epidemic, four schools and corporations were honoured for their fundraising efforts.
Morgan Stanley was named Top Corporate Fundraiser for raising a record-breaking HK$4 million with their choir performances, while the Hong Kong Sanatorium and Hospital took the Most Creative Corporate Fundraiser award for their festival, which included a cooking competition.
Discovery Mind Educational Organisation and Shung Tak Catholic English College took Top School Fundraiser and Most Creative School Fundraiser, respectively.
This year's beneficiaries include the ChickenSoup Foundation, which works to empower underprivileged children and their families, and the Rolling Books & Audio Description Association Hong Kong, which promotes reading and audio description to help the visually impaired.
The Hong Kong Women Workers Association dedicated to women's labour policies and PathFinders, the only NGO in Hong Kong providing aid to migrant mothers and children are also among the beneficiaries.
Copyright (c) 2020. South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.