From Chinese Press

Now, charity needs help

(China Daily)
Updated: 2011-07-01 09:15
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The Guo Meimei case has forced Red Cross Society of China into an unprecedented crisis, a crisis of trust. Guo flaunted her riches and lavish lifestyle while claiming to be connected with Red Cross Society of China. Though later she said that she had faked her association with the Red Cross, she had already caused enough damage to the society. The experience of Hong Kong Red Cross, however, paints a different picture, says an article in China Youth Daily. Excerpts:

Hong Kong Red Cross hires international accounting companies at the end of every year to audit its accounts and guarantee that donations are being used for specified purposes only.

After the audit, a 50-page is made public by the Hong Kong Red Cross for donors as well as ordinary people to find out how the donations have been used.

In stark contrast, some mainland charity organizations don't even have a website of their own, let alone publicizing their accounts. As early as 2006, the Ministry of Civil Affairs asked charity foundations to publicize their annual work reports, and collection and use of donations. But about half of the charities failed to meet the requirements for unknown reasons.

The Red Cross Society of China, too, has to explain how the donations it has collected have been used.

Many mainland donors never receive any feedback from the charity organizations and don't know who the beneficiaries are or how their money was spent. Worse, it is reported that some letters of thanks purported to be written by a beneficiary to a donor were forged.

Charity organizations in Hong Kong function under different government departments, which makes it mandatory for them to submit their financial statements to them.

Such management supervision and service are aimed at simplifying administrative procedure for charity organizations and ensuring that their activities do not inconvenience ordinary people and donors.