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Foundation focuses on donation management
By Cao Li (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-09-01 02:13

The Shanghai Charity Foundation (SCF) has announced it will change its role from project operations to a manager that focuses on fund donations.

This is part of a nation-wide move launched under the Regulations on the Management of Foundations (RMF) issued by the State Council, which took effect in June.

The RMF hopes to standardize operations and project management of all charity foundations in the country -- more than 1,200 in total.

"The regulation protects the interests of all parts concerned -- foundations, donators and beneficiaries," said Ma Zhongqi, spokesman for SCF, which is the city's first charity foundation to change its role. Shanghai now has 94 charity foundations.

"What we did in the past was to receive donations and organize various charity activities. But from now on, we will concentrate on donation management," said Ma.

As for charity project management, SCF will seek various co-operation and trusts with other associations, agents or companies, he said.

Donation management includes attracting donations, increasing their value and verifying qualifications of applicants.

"Individuals or organizations like orphanages or old-age homes can apply for donations. And we will decide whether to give and how much will be given by evaluating their qualifications," said Ma.

Some 70 per cent of the donations SCF received last year will be given out for charity purpose this year and less than 10 per cent will be used for administration, he said.

"We will push forward the donations collected in a commercial way, letting charity foundations compete with each other.

"The work should go on in a healthier way. If the foundations cannot get enough donations, they will die," said Ma.

He told China Daily that SCF will choose some qualified financing companies through bidding to increase donations.

"Any profits gained from it will be put into donations again," he said.

According to RMF, charitable foundations should take responsibility for investment failures.

RMF also stipulates that charitable foundations must improve the transparency of their donation management by announcing their yearly total incomes and expenses, cumulative inventory, expenses for charity projects and audit reports.

In the past 10 years, SCF has accumulated more than 90 million yuan (US$11 million) in donations.

Besides the role shifting, SCF has decreased its council members from previous 259 to current 23. All the civil servants who work in governmental departments left the council, which is required by RMF with an aim to reduce the government influence on charity foundations.

"All council members should be below 70 years old, who should love the charity industry with appropriate knowledge and ability on the foundation management," said Ma.

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