October 19th, 2011 | Global Times Negative news hitting charities
The China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation (CFPA) published its expenditure at a donors meeting recently. Officials at the meeting said negative news about charity groups has resulted in half the group’s funding targets not being met.
Liu Wenkui, the deputy secretary of the CFPA, told the Beijing Times at the meeting his organization has been affected by the negative news about Chinese charities continuously popping up throughout 2011.
He said so far the foundation has only raised 150 million yuan ($23.55 million), of the 300 million yuan target set for this year. “Many projects therefore can’t be carried on and some of our partners will be affected to varying degrees,” he told the paper.
On Monday, the 19th International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, more than 10,000 people, including representatives from about 200 donor organizations, attended the meeting held at the Beijing Olympic Park.
“It’s the first time the CFPA has held a meeting of donors open to the general public,” Ding Yadong, assistant to the director of the Resource Development Department of the CFPA, told the Global Times. “Many in the audience received free tickets to the meeting distributed by our volunteers.”
Earlier this year, a 10,000 yuan meal invoice from a Red Cross Society of China branch in Shanghai exposed Weibo users to what became the Guo Meimei case. It triggered indignation among the public when they saw the 20-year-old woman flaunting her wealth while claiming to be employed by the “Red Cross Chamber of Commerce” as one of its managers. Charity has become a sensitive word in Chinese society as a result and gradually lost credibility.
A subsidiary body of the Ministry of Civil Affairs launched an investigation entitled the 2010 National Charity Organization Information Disclosure Status Report last December. It showed 75 percent of charity organizations scored badly on their transparency record.
The donors’ meeting on Monday for info release is a move that shows “a good momentum in the charity industry,” Ding said.
CFPA’s statistics show it has raised fund and materials valued 550 million yuan last year. About 800 million yuan has been invested into poverty alleviation projects, benefiting 2.57 million impoverished or disaster-stricken populations, while 3.8 percent of the overall expenditure was spent on its administration.
The CFPA declared that it will hold the donors meeting annually from now on. It said transparency is the best feedback for the public, reported the Beijing Times.
“To better serve our donors, transparency and the efficiency of their donations are very important,” Ding told the Global Times Tuesday.
By Luo Wei