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Diamond Cab Grand Opening Ceremony Inaugurated by Ronald Arculli , Dr.Leong Che Hung and Bernard Chan

A New Historic Milestone for Hong Kong’s Social Enterprise Movement

Social Ventures Hong Kong (SVhk), partnering with the the city’s Taxi and Private Elderly Home sectors, has formed Diamond Cab (Hong Kong) Limited. The opening ceremony for Diamond Cab was held on 15 March 2010 at Olympian City, to mark a meaningful occasion in Hong Kong’s social enterprise movement. Guests came together to celebrate Diamond Cab’s first month providing barrier-free taxi services to Hong Kong people. A second milestone was also celebrated at the event: the launch of the innovative taxi advertising idea, "Mobile Gallery for Artists with Disabilities". With the support from venture philanthropy, private funding and management as well as the overarching social mission of being a responsible enterprise, it is hoped that Diamond Cab will receive greater social recognition and support in solving intractable social problems with its new and influential business model.

Honourable guests revealing the Diamond Cab.

Paraympic Athlete Wu Tung Sang Take a Ride in a Diamond Cab
Paralympic athlete Wu Tung Sang, who just won the bronze medal in Men’s archery Individual Compound Open in Guangzhou Asia Para Games was invited to take Diamond Cab to get a feel of the barrier-free Diamond Cab’s safe and convenient design, with custom-made loading and unloading facilities for wheelchair users. Wu is one of the VIP guests for the Grand Opening Ceromony which was officiated by the Hon Ronald Arculli, GBM, GBS, JP, Dr,.the Hon Leong Che Hung, GBM, GBS, JP, Chairman of Elderly Commission, The Hon Bernard C.Chan, GBS, JP, Deputy of The Chinese National People’s Congress, and Laurence Li, Convenor of The 30s Group. The guests gave their fullest support to Diamond Cab’s barrier-free taxi service.

The mother of the CEO of Diamond Cab, Ms. Leung Hui Kam Moon, became a wheelchair user a few years ago.

Hon Leong Che Hung, GBM, GBS, JP trying Diamond Cab.

Video Clip Showcasing the Challenges Faced in Setting Up Diamond Cab
At the beginning of the event a short film, "How did Social Entrepreneurship make Diamond Cab happen?" was shown to guests. Featured were interviews with Ms. Doris Leung, CEO of Diamond Cab, Mr. Joseph Ngai, Chairman of Diamond Cab, Mr. Yam Tai Ping, Chairman of Executive Committee, Kowloon Taxi Owners Association, Mr. Kenneth Chan, Director, Diamond Cab, also Executive Director, Sino Care Group, Mr. Francis Ngai, Founder and CEO of Social Ventures Hong Kong; The Hon Ronald Arculli, GBM, GBS, JP, Chairman of the SVhk Foundation Advisory Committee; and Mr. Ken Ito of Social Venture Partners Tokyo. Each briefly gave their views and/or experiences of the challenges in setting up Diamond Cab. The arduous process of joining different sectors, coupled with promoting the message and values of Social Ventures Hong Kong, have come together to create Diamond Cab, a new milestone in quality taxi services and assistance to the wheelchair users.

Video Clip Showcasing the Challenges Faced in Setting Up Diamond Cab

Sharing Speech on Embodying the Spirit of Social Enterprise
Mr. Francis Ngai, Founder and CEO of SVhk, and Ms. Doris Leung, CEO of Diamond Cab, were part of the telecommunications and media industry respectively before joining the social enterprise movement. The two share the same thinking that innovative business models can more effectively address the Hong Kong community's long-standing social problems. The Diamond Cab barrier-free taxi service, as a practical manifestation of their ideas, has proven to be successful in its first month of operations. Doris Leung recalled that during the challenging development process, one thing that kept her going is the fact that the existing illegal pick-up vans for wheelchair users are an inhumane and unhygienic way to fill the market gap. Ms. Leung believes that this cannot be tolerated as Hong Kong is well recognized as an international metropolis. To encourage private homes to avoid using illegal pick-up vans and to promote Diamond Cab as a viable and safe option, they plan to launch cash discount coupon packages to elderly home sectors to establish closer cooperation.

Mr. Francis Ngai, Founder and CEO of SVhk speaking at the Grand Opening Ceremony

Warm and Inspiring Ceremony
The Diamond Cab story is one of love and care for wheelchair users. The mother of the CEO of Diamond Cab, Ms. Leung Hui Kam Moon, became a wheelchair user a few years ago. This inspired her daughter Doris Leung to make efforts to improve the accessibility of transport for wheelchair users and expand Hong Kong’s barrier-free culture. Ms. Leung’s parents were part of the Diamond Cab inauguration ceremony. As the Diamond Cab was being unveiled, five lovely children, including Ms. Leung Hui Kam Moon’s granddaughter, Samatha Leung Hoi Lam, all emerged from the Diamond Cab and presented Mrs. Leung with carnations of five different colours. It was a warm and touching scene that reflected that caring for the elderly and wheelchair users should continue from generation to generation.

Arts as Part of Innovative Taxi Advertising

Arts as Part of Innovative Taxi Advertising
In addition to transporting wheelchair users in a safe and hygienic manner, each Diamond Cab will have its exterior transformed into an eye-catching "Mobile Gallery for Artists with Disabilities". This new taxi advertising idea invites sponsors to showcase artwork by disabled artists on the taxi ‘canvas’. This is a creative advertising opportunity for the sponsor as well as the artist. This brings valuable market exposure to sponsors who care about and support disadvantaged groups, as well as highlight the artist's work. In short, the concept is a perfect fusion of business and social values.

The pioneering sponsor of the Mobile Art Gallery is KeenAble Creation which mission is to harness the artistic skills of people with disabilities to further their job skills. The first piece of art showcased on a Diamond Cab is created by graduates of Yeung Yat Lam Memorial School and Buddhist Po Kwong School which are two special need schools. The artwork was completed under the guidance of Maxim Tang, the Creative Director of KeenAble Creation, and it reflects the joyful and colorful elements of childhood.

In addition to the Mobile Gallery, Diamond Cab has created a “Diamond Cab Charity Tour" programme. Corporate partners will sponsor wheelchair users who are recommended by charity organisations to enjoy unlimited rides on Diamond Cab, accompanied by volunteers from the corporate. Hong Kong Disneyland expressed full support for this innovative idea, and will provide free admission to participants of the Diamond Cab Charity Tour programme. Another ceremony will be announced in April, when further information will be available.