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The Mekong Club’s Sweatshop Challenge: King George V School (KGV)

The Mekong Club’s Sweatshop Challenge fund on CNN’s Freedom Day

LocationChina - Hong Kong SAR

Issue AreaCivil Society

Tax benefit eligibilityUS

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Sweatshop Challenge – My Freedom Day


To put in place a program that achieves the following objectives in support Freedom Day (March 14th):

  • To offer the participants a taste of what it is like to experience a sweatshop situation and to raise funding for the Mekong Club.
  • To bring a friendly competition between respected international schools HKIS and KGV to see who can bring the most awareness in Hong Kong via social media hashtags.
  • To collectively raise funds to help stop, prevent, detect, and remediate victims trapped in forced labour.


When it comes to modern slavery, there is often too much talk and not enough action. The goal of this effort is to move beyond this and act. To help raise awareness and funding to help fight the problem, a sweatshop challenge event will be carried out.

A group of participants from two schools will be challenged to spend one consecutive hour engaging in a repetitive action – putting nuts on bolts and then taking them off. They will do this without food, water, or breaks. If they do not perform fast enough, they will be scolded by the organizers.

Participants will gather donations by encouraging their supporters to pledge a fixed amount for each hour they do this task. During the event, the participants can encourage their friends, family members and colleagues to support them. The event will be run between both schools on March 14th, 2023.

Once completed, a short feedback session will be held to process the experience. Participants will be asked, “Imagine if this was your life seven days a week, 365 days a year, for no pay – how would this feel? What did you learn from the experience?” Students are encouraged to share their experiences online using the hashtag #SweatshopChallege, their respected school name, and other hashtags. The Mekong Club will provide the photography prop kit for in-person attendees, including school logos, to ramp up the fun competition between schools to see who can raise the most awareness funds. The annual Sweatshop Challenge winner will be the following week, once The Mekong Club has tallied the total funds each school raised and most online engagements. 

The event will promote a spirit of hope and optimism regarding how to respond to the modern slavery problem while also bringing a fun competition between schools to see who can raise the most awareness.

This 4-minute video summarizes last year’s event with HKIS, KGV and CNN International – Sweatshop Challenge – Students get a virtual lesson in modern day slavery

Reason for this Approach

The number of human trafficking victims has increased to 50 million post-COVID, an increase of 10 million people. At the same time, funding to address this problem has been diverted to health-related activities. We aim to raise awareness and funding to partner with the private sector and address this problem effectively.

Our goal is to offer students and parents a simulation that allows them to experience what it is like to work in a sweatshop situation. This innovative approach allows them to empathize with and feel the pain of those who work in such conditions. It also provides an opportunity for families to come together and work as a team to respond to this issue.

Expected Results:

  • The simulation process will raise awareness about the issue, providing participants with a glimpse into the world of modern slavery.
  • Funding will be generated to combat modern slavery.
  • Clips from this years in-person event will be broadcasted on CNN’s My Freedom Day, reaching a global audience with a message of hope and action.
  • To increase awareness in Hong Kong through student engagement.

Call to Action

We rely on the generosity from others to do our work. To implement the program efforts, The Mekong Club is seeking funding support. This will allow us to take our existing efforts and scale them to the maximum number of victims. With the work The Mekong Club has done, we have already helped thousands of people out of slavery. Your support will allow you to become a partner in this new innovative pioneering process. Please consider assisting us. By doing so, you are doing a heroic act.

About this Organization

LocationChina - Hong Kong SAR
Issue AreaCivil Society

About Give2Asia

Give2Asia is a trusted partner for international philanthropy and the leader in donor-advised giving to the Asia-Pacific. Our mission is to strengthen communities in Asia by making cross-border giving easier and more effective. Since 2001, Give2Asia has facilitated more than US$535 million of charitable grants across 30+ countries.

Tax Benefit Eligibility

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