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Cathay Pacific recycles computers to help needy students with their studies

22 Oct 2011

Cathay Pacific Airways has joined with Caritas Hong Kong to organise the “Recycled Computer Donation Campaign for Students”, aimed at recycling the airline’s computers and at the same time helping to enhance the studies of students from the Yau Tsim Mong District.

The airline launched a programme earlier this year to replace or upgrade all its computers, with a total of 4,600 PCs being replaced in Hong Kong. Its intention from the start was to find a partner to help find an environmentally friendly way to reuse or recycle the computers, and eventually Caritas was selected. At the same time Cathay Pacific pledged to donate HK$300,000 to sponsor a free recycled computer for 300 needy students.

The 300 beneficiaries attended today’s computer distribution day, with members of the airline’s corporate volunteer team, the “CX Volunteers”, joining in to help distribute the computers and run computer workshops for the students.

Speaking at the event, Cathay Pacific Director Corporate Affairs Quince Chong said: “This partnership between our airline and Caritas Hong Kong is a three-way win. We at Cathay Pacific have been able to recycle a huge number of used computers in an environmentally friendly way, while Caritas can provide computer and vocational training for young people at its computer workshop. At the same time, 300 young students will get free recycled computers to help them with their studies.”

Caritas’ Service Head of Youth and Community Service cum Community Development Service Frederick Lai said: “To improve disparities in wealth, many parents hope for a better education for their children. In this modern age, learning can be difficult without a functioning computer, so we are very grateful for Cathay Pacific’s donation which means more students can have a computer of their own to empower their learning.”

Caritas tests and recycles the used computers and then identifies those student applicants who will receive a recycled PC. Each recycled computer set comes with a CPU and a 15” LCD monitor, and has basic computer software installed. Caritas also provides a one-year warranty service. Those computers that cannot be repaired are dismantled and sent for recycling.

All 300 student beneficiaries come from underprivileged families. Cathay Pacific hopes the students will be able to make good use of the computers to enhance their studies and at the same time pass on the message about the importance of environment protection to others.

Cathay Pacific has a strong commitment to corporate social responsibility and takes the issue of environmental protection seriously. The airline incorporates green practices across its operation, from its aircraft to offices in the company’s headquarters, and is actively involved in a variety of community initiatives that contribute to the skills development and personal enhancement of young people. The Cathay Pacific “I Can Fly” and “English on Air” programmes are just two examples of the airline’s ongoing community efforts.

Cathay Pacific started working with Caritas in 2009 in order to help needy students get access to recycled computers to enhance their studies.