29 Oct 2019

Transcript: Welcome Remarks by Ms Cheo Hock Kuan at Temasek Trust Conversation 2019: New Pathways of Philanthropy

Transcript: Welcome Remarks by Ms Cheo Hock Kuan at Temasek Trust Conversation 2019: New Pathways of Philanthropy

Temasek Trust CEO, Ms Cheo Hock Kuan  giving her welcome remarks at Temasek Trust Conversation on 29 Oct 2019


Chairman of Temasek Holdings, Mr Lim Boon Heng,

Chairman of Temasek Trust, Mr Dhanabalan,

CEO of Temasek Holdings, Ms Ho Ching,

CEO of Temasek International, Mr Dilhan Pillay,

Distinguished guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,


  1. Good morning. On behalf of Temasek Trust, I bid you a warm welcome.


  2. Temasek Trust Conversation started six years ago as Temasek’s in-house sharing event on corporate philanthropy. The audience then were various Temasek non-profit organisations and the CSR departments of its portfolio companies.


  3. Three years ago, we partnered Stewardship Asia Centre to turn this in-house sharing event into a convening platform for non-profit institutions, foundations, and businesses to have a meaningful dialogue around how corporates could broaden their giving effort towards uplifting our communities.


  4. At this point, it would be deserving for me to express my thanks to Boon Hwee and his team from Stewardship Asia Centre for their significant efforts in positioning Temasek Trust Conversation, from its humble beginnings, to where it is today: which is an annual conversation event that is ready to engage a larger audience of like-minded partners and thought leaders from Singapore and beyond to discuss and explore key forces that we think will shape the new paradigm of philanthropy. 


  5. We at Temasek Trust are committed to our primary role as a responsible steward of philanthropic endowments and gifts. We are also passionate about our role as an advocate, convenor and catalyst for philanthropy. In June this year, we were honoured to receive the Temasek Shophouse as a gift from Temasek for the community. Nestled along downtown Orchard in a heritage building constructed in 1928, Temasek Shophouse serves as a cradle for social impact to encourage, enhance and elevate initiatives and activities that contribute towards the common good. Similarly in our role as a convenor for philanthropy, Temasek Trust is now ready to launch a multi-year conversation series focusing on New Pathways of Philanthropy.


  6. I believe that philanthropy is highly adaptive. It is always solutions-finding, evolving to address the changing needs of community, the aspirations of philanthropists and the dynamic fabric of society. This leads to the emergence of new philanthropic pathways over time, shaped by the contributions of different stakeholders each with their unique convictions, experiences, capabilities, and vision about what philanthropy can be.


  7. And that is our hope for Temasek Trust Conversation this year and in the next few years to follow: To explore new pathways of philanthropy through the wealth of perspectives that all of you bring. With our collective contributions, we see that the new landscape of philanthropy can be open to exciting concepts, structures and ventures.


  8. This being the inaugural year for the new series, we will kick start the dialogue with a high level discussion of multiple new pathways with esteemed panelists and speakers -- each active players and thought leaders in their respective areas. To sharpen our focus on application and impact, we will also shine a spotlight on Singapore’s giving landscape and examine a case study of how various organisations have piloted new ways to care for our silver generation. In each of the subsequent years, we will then dive deep into individual pathways for a closer examination, one at a time.


  9. Without further ado, the pathways that we have selected to focus on in this multi-year dialogue are (i) technology and social innovation, (ii) social enterprises, and (iii) impact investing. These three new pathways are but some of the many that are rewriting the conventional narratives of philanthropy.


  10. The world we live in today is one where technology allows for the democratization of philanthropy, where all are invited to play their part in contributing to our collective good. The world we live in today is also one where individuals and organizations no longer have to choose between social or business value. Instead, with social enterprises and impact investing, we can be philanthropists achieving long-term social value alongside sustainable returns. With these new pathways, a new narrative of philanthropy is being written that champions integration, innovation and inclusion.


  11. With these in mind, I hope that today’s conference will inspire us to dream further about what philanthropy can be and turn some of them into reality. To kick start the programme this morning, please join me in welcoming up on stage our keynote speaker for Temasek Trust Conversation 2019, Mr Dilhan Pillay, CEO of Temasek International. Thank you and have a wonderful day ahead. 
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