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OCEAN PARK STRENGTHENS SOCIAL CARE PROGRAMMES TO EMBRACE UP TO 400,000 PEOPLE AND 330,000 STUDENTS ON SOCIAL ASSISTANCE

2008-07-01

VALUE OF HK$52 MILLION CONTRIBUTION LAST YEAR
TO CSR INITITATIVES

NEW PRICING STRUCTURE TO TAKE EFFECT ON 1 AUGUST 2009 WITH
14 MONTHS OF “SMARTFUN” LIMITED TIME OFFER 
FOR FIRST-TIME AND RENEWAL APPLICATIONS


(Hong Kong - 1 July 2009) Being a socially-caring organisation, Ocean Park will launch another social initiative that will enable people with financial hardship to go to Ocean Park.  Starting today, individuals eligible for support from the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) Scheme and presenting the valid Certificate of Comprehensive Social Security Assistance Recipients (for Medical Waivers) <綜合社會保障援助受助人 (醫療費用豁免證明書)> issued by the Social Welfare Department can visit Ocean Park during the day at a special admission rate of $20.  This brings the total number of social initiatives implemented by Ocean Park to 13. In addition, the $2,000,000 student subsidy fund set up in October of 2007 to enable school children from disadvantaged families to take part in programmes run by the Ocean Park Academy (OPA) each year, at no cost, will have the eligibility extended to include more students in need.  Ocean Park also announced a new pricing structure for daytime admission and Smartfun annual pass, which will take effect on 1 August. A summary of the new admission is as follows: 

Ocean Park Day Admission

Ticket Type

General Admission

Adult

HK$250

Child (aged 3 - 11)

HK$125

Child (aged below 3)

Free

Senior citizens (holders of Hong Kong Identity Card or Senior Citizen Card aged 65 or above)

Free

 

Ocean Park SmartFun Annual Pass

Pass Type

Gold

Sliver

Unlimited admission to Ocean Park throughout the year

Unlimited daytime admission to Ocean Park from Mondays to Fridays and before noon on Saturdays, throughout the year (excluding public holidays and special night events)

Adult

HK$695

HK$545

Child (aged 3 - 11)

HK$350

HK$270

Full-time Student(aged 12 or above)

HK$485

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Guests making new and/or renewal applications for the SmartFun annual pass between 1 August 2009 and 30 September 2009 will enjoy a two-month bonus, with SmartFun passes that are valid for 14 months.

Dr Allan Zeman, Ocean Park chairman, said, “We understand that times can be tough for some people in the community.  As Hong Kong’s People’s Park, we want everyone in Hong Kong to be able to enjoy and be inspired by all that Ocean Park offers.  At the same time, Ocean Park is a not-for-profit statutory body and we do not receive funding support from the Government. I’ve always said that price increases are inevitable, but we have always tried to hold it off for as long as possible.  And if we do implement adjustments, we will keep it as low as possible, and it will be done responsibly, to cover operating expenses, capital improvements and debt service.  Value-for-money for our guests will always be our top priority, and thus far, no other theme park or tourist attraction in the region – or even the world - can boast a better value than Ocean Park Hong Kong, with a multitude of attractions and activities combining animal presentations, thrill rides, and entertainment, all in one place, for everyone in the family.”

He continued, “Ocean Park is for all to enjoy – and to give everyone in Hong Kong the chance to visit Ocean Park at least once a year, all 7,000,000 Hong Kong residents can visit Ocean Park for free on their birthdays.”

Ocean Park now runs 13 social care programmes. In the fiscal year just completed* (*1 July 2008 to 30 June 2009,) the total value of Ocean Park’s contribution to the community through these initiatives is equivalent to the value of HK$52,000,000. (Please see the Fact Sheet for the details of these initiatives.) 

Dr Zeman added, “Our quest for greater engagement with the community will be ongoing, as we continue to come up with new guest promotions.”

Each year, Ocean Park delivers over 1,000 interactive and compelling educational programmes through its education arm, OPA, to about 45,000 school children.  Since the enhancement made in 2007 to the student subsidy scheme, Ocean Park has absorbed the course fees for over 3,300 students who receive support from the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance Scheme (CSSA) or from the Student Financial Assistance Agency (SFAA). With the latest feature, students receiving theKindergarten and Child Care Fee Remission Scheme, and/or the School Textbook Assistance Scheme will also be eligible for full or partial course fee exemption.  (Please refer to the Fact Sheet for details.)

Dr. Zeman said, “We uphold the highest quality in our offering, including new products coming out from the HK$5.55 billion Master Redevelopment Project, which just delivered its first major themed area, Amazing Asian Animals, to fabulous public response.  We are eager to showcase the next project to come on stream within the next 60 days – the opening of the Ocean Express funicular system. All this positive growth taking place at Ocean Park is generating employment for thousands of people, including 100 permanent positions recently created with the opening of Amazing Asian Animals, and facilitating local economic activity and tourism growth.”

Dr Zeman continued, “Ocean Park will keep the compelling stories about the natural world coming through our efforts in education and conservation.  With 13 social care initiatives, we hope to enable more individuals and families to get inspired while spending quality time together - with Ocean Park.”

According to statistics from the Social Welfare Department, there are currently over 480,000 individuals receiving social assistance.