Corporate Social Responsibility

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Please click here to read our feature on Business Times, 16 Feb 2018.

Working Responsibly, Caring Deeply

At HSL, we understand that hope means different things to different people. However, the one way we know we can provide hope to the largest number of people is by helping to build a stronger and sustainable future. This in turn hinges on shouldering our responsibilities on three fronts: Social, Environmental and Economical – a belief that we had upheld since our earliest days. With the establishment of the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Committee in Year 2010, we have taken another big step forward to becoming a responsible corporate citizen.

Whether it’s working at the construction site or shaping policies and strategies in the boardroom, we have made consistent effort to enhance sustainability, accountability and transparency. Furthermore, we are constantly developing initiatives to support the community, encourage volunteerism, promote good morals, and inculcate universal virtues such as compassion and kindness, without discrimination against any race, color, creed or religion.

Our set of CSR policies declares our belief in upholding our social and moral responsibilities and reaffirms our commitment towards the greater good of all.

Taking Care of Our Own

Internally, we continually place a strong emphasis on our employees’ health and well-being. Sports and leisure activities such as futsal tournaments, bowling competitions and Family Day are held regularly throughout the year. For our effort in engaging employees to lead healthy and vibrant lives, HSL was awarded the Singapore HEALTH Award Gold in 2014 by the Health Promotion Board.

HSL made a monetary contribution to The Society for the Aged Sick and distributed food products to the residents. On top of that, a show was staged for the residents which brought an hour of entertainment and laughter to them. Performances included a duet by Chinese musicians, a change mask segment by a local entertainer, and a Burmese cultural dance by HSL’s employees! As with the culture of Singapore which embraces diversity of the population, the initiative exhibited the diversity and inclusive culture of HSL as the various ethnic groups of employees intermingle with the residents.

The establishment of the CSR Committee saw a much concerted movement towards delivering hope for our stakeholders. Annual CSR objectives and targets were clearly defined, and the committee meets on a monthly basis to discuss and deliberate on the activities. Some of the highlights include our first major donation of $100,000 to Singapore-born humanitarian NGO, Mercy Relief, and signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) with them to better address the disadvantaged coastal communities in the region. This collaboration will allow HSL to map out a new pattern of philanthropic activities to increase HSL’s engagement with the communities where it is serving commercially and expose HSL’s employees to regional volunteer work.

On top of that, HSL managed to raise more than $40,000 for the Pakistani Flood Relief efforts in our first ever Flag Day and also send four of our HSL volunteers to perform HSL’s first overseas community works in Cambodia.

Four volunteers from HSL embarked on a 5-day Mercy Overseas Volunteer Expedition (MOVE) to Vietnam under the auspices of Mercy Relief. HSL also contributed $12,000 for the installation of a cluster water filtration system and new courtyard for a local school.

The CSR Committee believes that when there is a constant platform for fellow employees to do good, they can gain better perspectives on social and environmental issues. With that, new idealism will evolve and ultimately, this will entice them to take better ownership of the CSR issues.

On our 18th anniversary, our employees participated in the cooking and distribution of free meals to 2,500 needy. In conjunction with the World Humanitarian Day, HSL together with Mercy Relief organized a golf tournament which raked in $220,000 worth of donations. Continuing our belief to provide the platform to do good, our staffs together with their family and friends further understand the meaning of true happiness, all through their compassionate act of giving and caring during their visit to the Lions Home for the Elders.

HSL initiated the Corporate Citizen Foundation (CCF),whose mission is to improve capacity and resilience of vulnerable regional communities through collective corporate collaboration. The CCF seeks to pool together resources from the corporate sector, such as companies’ expertise and networks, and encourage corporate collaboration in disaster response.

In extending the reach of our community development plans, our Malaysian team has been recruited into our CSR efforts.

In celebration of Hari Raya Haji, which is a festival marked by compassion, sharing of wealth and counting of blessings, the CSR committee, led by Head of Village, Mr Azmi, prepared Lemang (Bamboo Rice) and Rendang (Spicy Meat Dish) to be distributed to the poor and needy in collaboration with the local community.

The CSR committee also held a dinner event for an Old Folks’ Home in Jimah, where HSL currently is executing a power plant project, during Deepavali on 22 October 2016.  It was in the hopes of making the festival of lights that little brighter, as well as foster greater understanding and harmony between the community and our employees. All staff were invited and a lively performance was put up by fun-loving volunteers to bring some cheer to the event.

The visit to the Old Folks’ Home also prompted the discovery that the residents have been showering with cold water since their water heaters broke down more than a year ago. HSL has contributed 2 units of solar water heaters in both male and female dormitories, which are currently undergoing installation.

In conjunction with our vision to build a greater HSL for a better world, we are conscious about our carbon footprint and seek ways to reduce it and improve energy efficiency. Upon discovering last October that the water heaters at the old folks’ home were not working, HSL contributed 2 units of solar-powered water heating system. The installation of solar water heaters was completed on 19 January 2017. Presently, the system is in good working condition and has improved the residents’ living condition. We hope to make use of our engineering expertise to enable homely comforts and better more lives in the community.

Teaming up with Aquayana, HSL travelled to Laos, Myanmar, India and Indonesia in the aftermath of the natural disasters that plagued our Southeast Asian neighbours to deliver and deploy cutting-edge portable water treatment systems that addressed the acute need for drinking water. The water purification system churns out more than 400L of potable water hourly, which is equivalent to serving 6,000 displaced residents.

Even as we bear witness to the horrifying scale and frequency of natural disaster-borne destruction, HSL is grateful to be able to contribute our expertise and experience to improve the lives of people, communities and the environment, and  co-creating solutions for a better tomorrow. While devastated at the magnitude of loss and destruction encountered in the aftermath of the Laos dam collapse, we take solace in doing our part to help the victims. Together, we engineer a better world!

In addition, we also officially launched the annex building consisting of 4 units of washrooms and an outdoor kitchen for Shekinah Care Centre in Seremban, Malaysia. Our donation drive for the orphanage saw a rousing success, attracting a 75% participation rate across our project sites in Singapore and Malaysia. We are heartened that so many of our employees stepped forward with compassion, generosity and kindness. No amount is too small and indeed, the RM$15,000 raised will go a long way in providing for the children’s learning needs.

Following HSL’s involvement in the 2016 reconstruction of the Children of the Universe (COU) Orpanage in Nepal post-Gorkha earthquake, we kept in touch with them and tried to contribute wherever we could. We believe in building sustainable, long-term relationships that are mutually beneficial and evolve organically together.

We were proud to see them launch the new “Study Corner” in 2019, a room where most of the school-age children were able to prepare for their examinations in peace. To encourage them to adopt technology and embark on their digitalisation journey, we donated 5 laptops to aid their education efforts.

In view of the importance of education, we also sponsored the annual education fees of 30 students of lower SES from St. Joseph’s English High School in India to alleviate their families’ financial burdens and give them the encouragement and opportunity to quit the poverty cycle towards a brighter and better future.

In line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 7 (Affordable and Sustainable Energy) and 13 (Climate Change), HSL installed solar panels onboard our piling barge. This will fuel the essential lights and controls for our vessel, reducing our reliance on carbon-based fuels and contributing to a cleaner, greener and more sustainable world.

HSL consistently seeks new and improved ways of conducting our business and executing our projects toward our purpose, “Together, we engineer a better world”.

During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in Southeast Asia where access to food and other basic necessities were likely to be badly affected by the less mobile, and after meeting with and understanding the needs of Persatuan Kebajikan Amal Da Ai Malaysia, HSL donated a 14-seater van to aid their logistical efforts in sending numerous supplies to different families everyday.

We believe in looking beyond our immediate ecosystem for ways we can help the more vulnerable communities around us and in the region we operate. It is important now more than ever to embrace the human spirit of grace, kindness and compassion, and to help each other in ways we can contribute.

HSL Philanthropy Corporate Social Responsibility