Trend Micro has been at the cutting edge of technology innovation for almost 30 years. During that time, we’ve always had to have a keen eye on what’s coming next — anticipating threats so we can keep our customers protected, whatever comes their way. But we also recognize that in our race for the modern, we can sometimes forget the importance of the past. That’s why, as Chief Cultural Officer (CCO) of Trend Micro and Chairman of Trend Micro Education Foundation, I recently went to a Taiwanese elementary school to raise funds to support its traditional Chinese orchestra.
Planting the seeds of hope
It’s a long time since I grew up with my siblings, including Trend Micro CEO Eva, in the beautiful landlocked county of Nantou in central Taiwan. But I’ve always had a keen interest in what’s going on in the region, and recently heard that Neihu Elementary School was having problems supporting its Nanguan orchestra. Nanguan is a centuries-old school of classical Chinese music played with traditional wind and stringed instruments, as well as a strange wooden clapper known as a muban. It’s a hauntingly beautiful sound and a captivating bridge between past, present and future which could too easily fall by the wayside unless future generations are encouraged to continue the tradition.
As Chairman of the Trend Education Foundation, I saw the 30-student Neihu school as a cause worthy of investment. Along with a NTD 896,000 (US$30,100) education subsidy, the foundation helped to organise a fundraising tea party for invited guests under the cherry blossom. As well as regaling the guests with a Nanguan recital, the students were able to showcase their understanding of the traditional tea ceremony — another important part of local culture. The party in nearby Lugu was attended by my sister Eva, as well as many other members of the family including my brothers, Yi-Der Peter Chen , Chairman of Lehigh Technologies and Yu Zen Eason Chen, Founder of Tai Gium Enterprise Co., Ltd.
Daring to dream
As with all Trend Micro outreach to local communities, the aim is not simply to invest financial support on a one-off basis, but to give in a way that can be sustained going forward. To paraphrase the old proverb, it’s not just a case of giving man a fish, but teaching him how to fish. Thus, we helped the school plan and organize the fund-raising activity itself, so that it can do the same in the years to come.
It’s an approach we try to extend to everything we do as a company in the CSR space. Our Give and Match initiative, for example, encourages individual employees to choose a charity and raise money for it — with Trend Micro matching the total raised. With this approach, we’re helping worthy causes all over the globe dare to dream, whilst planting the seeds from which will hopefully grow a culturally rich future for us all.