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Foundation established to help poor students

Updated: 05 07 , 2013 19:39

A national public funded organization was established Thursday in Beijing to assist China's large number of poverty-stricken students and it hopes individuals and organizations in China and worldwide will contribute to the foundation's cause.

Supported by the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Finance, the China Education Development Foundation, with a registered capital of 50 million yuan (US$6.2 million), will help mainland students from poverty-stricken families, as well as those from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan who study at mainland schools.

Donations and technical assistance from domestic or overseas governments, organizations and individuals are all welcome, said the foundations' chairman Zhang Baoqing, the former vice-minister of education.

He said help from individuals and organizations in China and worldwide greatly contributed to the government's efforts in assisting poor students.

"China now has about 40 million poor students," he said.

"It is not only the government's responsibility to help them, but also the responsibility for us all."

He stressed the foundation's processes would be transparent and publicly supervised. Students are required to apply straight to the foundation for subsidies, and the money would be given to them without going through any intermediates.

"It may help to prevent corruption," Zhang said. But he admitted such an operation would bring difficulties when trying to verify the details of student's applications because China is such a big country and it would be impossible to visit each student's home.

Each primary school student will receive an annual subsidy of 600 yuan (US$74), while the middle school student will receive up to 1200 yuan (US$148) and university student will receive 6000 yuan (US$740).

The foundation has so far received donations of more than 200 million yuan (US$24.7 million), most of which are from domestic organizations and enterprises.

The foundation will also render support to poor schools that encounter difficulties in the process of educational reform and development, and will subsequently award those individuals and organizations that have made special contributions to China's educational undertakings. 

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