RHB Banking Group MD Mohd Rashid Mohamad (middle right), RHB chairman Tan Sri Ahmad Badri Mohd Zahir (middle left) and the RHB team in Denai, Sabak Bernam, Selangor, planted over 530 mangrove trees along the Denai coast, as part of the RHB Touch Hearts 2023. — AZMAN GHANI/The Star

RHB Banking Group continues to walk the talk on its commitment to sustainability, especially in driving environmental stewardship.

Last year, the group’s employees across the Asean region organised various fund-raising activities over the course of three months and raised cumulatively close to RM750,000.

These funds were used to run 43 humanitarian and environmental programmes under its annual employee advocacy community initiative, Touch Hearts.

The 2023 edition of RHB Touch Hearts saw over 10,000 employees from Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Brunei, Cambodia and Laos volunteer en masse to champion their chosen programmes.

In Malaysia, one of these programmes was a collaboration with Persatuan Nelayan Kawasan Pelabuhan Klang and the Majlis Pengurusan Komuniti Kampung to clean the river and restore the jetty at Pengkalan Nelayan Sg Daun in Kampung Rantau Panjang in Klang.

The day-long programme which involved employees from RHB’s headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, aimed to minimise the negative impact on fish populations and marine habitats while raising awareness about protecting the livelihood of local fishermen and the importance of marine conservation.

The team also conducted entrepreneurship training for single mothers to empower them to generate sustainable income to improve their economic situation.

“RHB Touch Hearts’ main purpose is to uplift and empower communities, focusing on both humanitarian actions and environmental awareness,” said RHB Banking Group managing director and chief executive officer Mohd Rashid Mohamad.

“The programme took a holistic approach to uplift the community’s well-being, addressing immediate human needs and long-term environmental goals.

“Setting a common date for all our employees to simultaneously volunteer in engaging the local communities signifies our collective drive and the impact we RHBians wish to create together.

“It is not just about making a statement but about transforming our shared vision into meaningful actions, living out our commitment to Making Progress Happen for Everyone.”

Mohd Rashid also joined another group of employees in Sabak Bernam in Selangor for tree planting, where over 530 mangrove trees were planted.

In one day, RHB employees planted over 5,400 trees, of which 4,000 were mangrove trees, in various locations in Malaysia.

This is intended to generate a positive impact of an estimated five tonnes of carbon dioxide accumulative sequestration within a year, which will increase to 160 tonnes within seven years.

Aside from the Touch Hearts initiative, RHB Banking Group also runs a year-long Touch Hearts 360 – a holistic community engagement programme that provides monetary assistance as well as necessities to communities in need during disaster and festive seasons.

For example, in response to devastating floods that swept through several Malaysian regions at the end of 2023, the group swiftly mobilised resources to aid 400 families in the worst-affected areas. This concerted effort helped to alleviate the affected communities’ hardships and laid the groundwork for long-term recovery and resilience.

In addition to its humanitarian efforts, RHB strongly emphasises investing in the future through initiatives aimed at nurturing the potential of youths.

In 2023, its RHB X-Cel impacted close to 3,000 underprivileged students to excel academically, while its Money Master programme promoted financial literacy among 11,000 secondary school students.

“Our approach is simple. We believe in the power of giving back in the same vein that we are in the business of delivering excellent service experience to our customers.

“Through our community outreach programmes, we invest in community development, which will indirectly strengthen the fabric of the countries we operate in,” Mohd Rashid said.

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