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Chinese Red Cross releases annual report in bid to regain credibility

(Global Times)

08:32, June 19, 2012

The Chinese Red Cross Foundation yesterday published its 2011 annual report to list its achievements and financial figures, as one of its latest attempts to quell public criticism over its transparency and credibility following a number of scandals last year.

The foundation announced the release of the annual report on its Sina Weibo microblog, with a link to its official website, where a 94-page pdf document is available for download.

The report said the foundation received 167 million yuan ($26.5 million) in donations last year, with over 200 million yuan of income that "exceeded our annual target."

The report also highlighted the number of hospitals they helped build, schools they have put up and teachers they have helped receive training in the past year, among other things.

The release of the annual report is another move by the Chinese Red Cross Foundation to improve its transparency after public outrage surged last year following the Guo Meimei scandal, in which the self-proclaimed Red Cross employee showed off her luxury lifestyle.

More scandals followed, including reports about the foundation donating cancer treatment machines that were claimed to have cost millions of yuan each, but were only worth a few thousand yuan.

The credibility of the charity organization fell to an all-time low, while many people claimed that they would never donate through the Red Cross.

The report yesterday addressed these scandals, announcing that the foundation will take steps to improve management and enhance assessment and auditing.

The foundation will also "protect the Red Cross public welfare brand, prevent potential risks in cooperation with enterprises, ensure standard development, systematic management, open and transparent public welfare projects, and give assurances to the public and society," the report said.

In the foundation's first ever open house day held on June 6, Zhao Baige, its executive vice president, said reform of the foundation is unavoidable, hoping it can become a model for other social organizations. She added that the amount of donations has not declined, as many have expected.

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