At HSBC we believe that access to education and natural resources are essential to resilient communities. Through our Education Programme we help young people gain access to education and to develop life-skills through opportunities they would not ordinarily have. Through our global HSBC Water Programme we help protect valuable river systems and provide hundreds of thousands of people with safe water and sanitation. Our community investment initiatives support charities and enable our employees to get involved through volunteering.

Giving to charity

As well as making charitable donations, HSBC operates a number of programmes to help our customers and employees donate to charity.

In 2006, we were the first bank to enable customers to donate to our six national charities and Disasters Emergency Committee appeals via our ATMs. Since then, more than GBP2.2 million has been donated to causes including the Typhoon Haiyan Appeal, the fastest and most generous response to a crisis appeal by our customers using our ATMs.

Our six national charities are selected by our employees every two years. Our partners for 2016/17 are: Alzheimer's Society, Cancer Research UK, Dogs Trust, Mind, Macmillan Cancer Support and NSPCC.

Supporting access to education

At HSBC, we recognise the value of education and the life-changing opportunities it can bring. Education is also an essential building block to driving economic development, helping to create thriving communities and inspiring young people to achieve their potential.

Each year, our education programmes, collectively known as the Young People Programme, reach more than 50,000 young people in the UK through 14 schemes supported by an investment of GBP14 million. Here are two of the programmes HSBC supports:

Opportunity Partnership

In 2013, HSBC created the three year, GBP30 million Opportunity Partnership working with four specialist charities - Catch22, St Giles Trust, The Prince's Trust and Tomorrow's People - with the ambitious goal of helping 25,000 disadvantaged young people in the UK into education, training or employment. The programme has now concluded and we are very proud to announce that our goal was exceeded with 25,171 young people moving into education, training and employment.

The Prince's Trust Fairbridge programme

In 2012, HSBC launched a community programme to donate GBP5 million over five years to The Prince's Trust Fairbridge programme. This aims to help 3,000 vulnerable 13 to 17 year olds who have either been excluded or are in danger of being excluded from school. It works to get them back into education, training and employment. Four years into the programme, over 6,000 young people have been helped, and hundreds of HSBC employees have helped run money management and employability workshops.

Encouraging volunteering

Employees can volunteer for national programmes such as the Opportunity Partnership, Teach First, Young Enterprise and the HSBC Water Programme, as well as local grassroots projects.

We believe it is important to support employees working on our community projects and grant them a day’s paid leave each year to lend their support.

Supporting our Communities

Any employee engaged in a project within their local community that offers volunteering opportunities for bank employees and has a positive, lasting impact, can apply for funding of up to GBP40,000 a year for their chosen registered charity. Supported projects include building sensory gardens in hospices, supporting city farms, and working with schools and universities on a 'Stockmarket' project.

In 2015, 71 local projects received nearly GBP653,000 of funding and nearly 1,500 HSBC employees volunteered over 10,000 hours of their own time.