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Chairman's Message

Dr. Benjamin Lai

Chairman of Board of Directors,
MentalCare Connect Co Ltd

It is my pleasure to present to you the seventeeth annual report of the Company.

As a social enterprise set up by the Mother Organization, The Mental Health Association of Hong Kong (MHAHK), the Company has continued to fulfil successfully the social goal of providing training and employment opportunities for the socially disadvantaged in addition to an increased turnover of the gross income of the Company in the past year.

The number of employees at the end of the past year is 181 including about 60% of staff being the disadvantaged. The Company has also provided training opportunities for 314 persons in the past year. I am thankful to the staff of the Company to commit in fulfilling the social mission of the Company. Their care and concern about the psychological well-being of each member of the Company is the most treasurable values cultivated by the Company.

The turnover of the Company has increased by about 8.5% over the preceding year. This represents a 55% increase in comparing with the past five years’ turnover (i.e. 2014-15). The Company has increased the amount of year end bonus payable to members of its staff to show the appreciation of their efforts. The net profit of the Company in the past year is about HK$330,000. This allows the Company to achieve the goal of being a self-sustained social enterprise and together with the blessing of MHAHK to be able to consider development of more business opportunities for the Company and increased employment opportunities for the disadvantaged persons.

When the financial situation of the society is bullish, the Company faces difficulty in recruitmenting of new staff. Hopefully with the downturn of the financial situation of the society, the Company is in a better position to cope with the challenges and to provide more employment opportunities for the disadvantaged.

The development of Company into one of the most established social enterprises in Hong Kong founded by an NGO will not have been possible without the blessing and support by the Chairman, Executive Committee, Executive Director and staff of MHAHK. The Company is thankful to the continual support of Social Welfare Department, Home Affairs Department and various hospitals of the Hospital Authority. The Company is also grateful for the various corporations and organisations who buy into the value of shopping to show you care and shouldering corporate social responsibility through collaboration with social enterprise.

On behalf of the Board of Directors I wish to express our thanks to Mr. W S Chung, our Chief Executive Officer, and his colleagues for their commitment and efforts to the values and running of the Company. I would also like to thank members of the board of directors for the continual support and advice to the Company over the past years.

Mr. Chung Wai Shing

CEO, MentalCare Connect Co Ltd

2018-19 Executive Report

The cornerstone of sustainable development for a social enterprise is to create a dedicated working environment and atmosphere for staff, share the accomplishment with them and further demonstrate the positive impact to the society. With the scale of it getting larger, the social expectation and commitments will become greater. Internal integration and optimization become exceptional important for the sustainable growth. In the business world, the ability of “MentalCare Connect” in creating profit maybe relatively weak as the net profit generated from hundreds of million dollars revenue is very small. However, what we treasure is the growth of the colleagues, along with the Company with breaking through their own limitations. The Company records profit for the seventh consecutive years. The Board of Directors decided to share the fruitful outcome with the colleagues by releasing special bonus to all the staff.


Financial Performance

In the year of 2018-2019, the Company’s income was HK$156,289,031, an increase of approximately 8% year-on-year. Among them, “Enhancing Employment of People with Disabilities through Small Enterprise Project” and “Enhancing Self-Reliance Through District Partnership Programme” funded a total of HK$879,125 as a seed fund for various social enterprise projects, translating for an overall 0.56% revenue. The Company’s after-tax profit is HK$333,111 which was equivalent to an annual tax of HK$23,249. The increase in operating income was mainly attributable to the sustainable increase in the revenue of the three street front shops operating in the communities. In addition, the opening of “Cheers Gallery” Kwong Wah Hospital Rehab Links in July 2018 instantly synergised with the operations of “Cheers Gallery” Rehab Links at Waterloo Road also boosted up the turnover.


Core Mission Implementation

As of March 2019, “MentalCare Connect” operated 31 social enterprise projects. A total of 181 staff was employed, 110 of them were disabled persons. 314 trainees were referred to our retail outlets by different organisations. In the “Buy Social” Movement, we have launched “Social Procurement Coupon” and “Business Partner Engagement Series: Social Procurement as a Strategic Tool to Drive Social Impact” Forum in 2018, along with the operations of SE Mall. All these encouraged the business enterprises to participate more in social procurement for fulfilling their corporate social responsibilities.


Business Development

Pursuant to the “Mission 2020” company strategy announced in 2017, “MentalCare Connect” would create job opportunities for disabled persons by seeking business opportunities in the community and proactively bid for the hospital premises for retail business. A series of winning bids of the licence operations in “Cheers Gallery” Kwong Wah Hospital Rehab Links, “Cheers Gallery” Princess Margaret Hospital Rehab Links and “Cheers Gallery” Lai King Building Convenience Store symbolise a big leap forward in achieving “Mission 2020”. The number of organization joining the “Organization Consumption Project” has increased to 50, serving 450,000 employees / members. This reflected the enterprise / organisations getting more concern in providing benefit to their employees / members. We anticipated the direct sales and corporate procurement would have staggering growth in future.


Future

Facing the rapid and drastic changes in market and political-social environment, “MentalCare Connect” would “keep calm and move forward” – making progress with conservative mind, to realize the goal of “Mission 2020”. I am proud of the extraordinary achievements created by my colleagues at all levels of “MentalCare Connect” in the past year. My sincere gratitude also goes to the Chairman of the Board of Directors, Dr. Benjamin Lai, for his leadership and valuable advice and guidance from the Directors.