NGO sends SOS on funding
Updated: 2014-01-02 00:47
By HE DAN (China Daily)
Deng Guosheng, director of Tsinghua University's NGO Research Center, said it is inevitable that some international foundations will cut or stop their financial aid to China.
"Hundreds of thousands of chain organizations or grassroots organizations should think about localization, and diversify their funding channels," he said.
Li Jinguo said he and his colleagues felt stunned when they heard of the international organization's decision.
He sees the next three years as a key period for reforming the villages in China and says it has become harder for villages to find suitable children if they only foster healthy orphans.
"Every village was built to accommodate 120 to 140 children, but now about half are not fully occupied," he said.
Since the government started to provide cost of living subsidies in 2010 for orphaned and HIV-affected children not living in child welfare institutions, relatives of orphaned children have become more willing to raise them, he said.
"Chinese society has undergone dramatic changes in past decades. The plight of some children has become serious for reasons other than poverty, so our services should be expanded to reach vulnerable children in different situations, such as street children," he said.
However, such reforms can only be pushed forward if the government covers vulnerable children's living expenses or if the organization can raise funds from the public.
"Children in plight" in China usually refers to those where one parent has died and the other wants to relinquish custody, or children whose parents have divorced after one was imprisoned and the other wants to give up custody.
"We had a meeting with our SOS mothers and most of them agreed to collect funds from the public," Li Jinguo said.
However, the organization's first attempt at a charity auction of handicrafts — paintings by SOS children at a golf club in Beijing in November — did not go well as expected, he said.
"We lacked experience, so we only raised about 8,000 yuan," he said.
He added that his organization is improving information disclosure on its website and training its staff members in fundraising skills.