I was raised doing charity work. From bible ministry, to reading to the blind, collecting toys for tots, doing walks for lupus and MS, charity has always been an important part of my life. Doing charity work is something I really miss doing living in China. While there are some volunteer organizations in China, there aren’t many. And if you don’t speak Chinese, it can be nearly impossible to find somewhere to volunteer. Then there are times of great national crisis when all you want to do is send money to help, but all you hear about on the news is how corrupt all the official donation foundations are. So how can one help out in China? Here are some sources:
- The Butterfly House and other local private charities. One thing you can do is simply ask around to try and find a private charity organization in your town. Here in Changsha, we have the Butterfly House which is the only children’s hospice in China and is run by a British organization. You can donate money, time, or items. They have all the information for donations and volunteering on their website and have a blog that talks about the amazing work they do for all of their little butterflies. If you know of a private charity in the town you are living in, please let me know in the comments so I can let other people know about them.
- One Foundation by Jet Li. Jet Li was once a Red Cross ambassador until he founded he own charity organization based on the principle of transparency. This is considered one of the best charity organizations in China and most Chinese people will point to One Foundation if asked where to send funds for disaster relief. You can donate at any China Merchants Bank (they are everywhere) to account #755917671010888.
- Donate to an international charity in your home country like the Red Cross or UNICEF. Even though you are donating money in America, England, or wherever you are from, these organizations allocate the money where it is most needed worldwide. They know best where to send the funds needed in an emergency.
- Use a charity watchdog group like Charity Navigator or The American institute for Philanthropy to find a quality charity that donates where you want the money go. There are tons of smaller, excellent charities who can use time, items, and money all year round, not just in times of crisis. Some of the better charities that focus on China are Half the Sky and Pearl S. Buck International.
Hopefully, all the scandals and negative press around charity donations in China have not hardened and jaded your heart from giving to those less fortunate. Make a donation to help someone in need today!