The Growing Impact Of Philanthropy In China: A Conversation With Rui Wang

Read about the future of China’s nonprofit sector, and get to know GlobalGiving’s China Office Representative, Rui Wang.

Rui Wang

China Office Representative, GlobalGiving

Who She Is:

Rui cultivates partnerships with companies, NGOs, and government ministries in China. She also works for UNDP China as a national consultant, managing the Philanthropy and Civil Society portfolio. Rui holds a master’s degree in tourism management from Lanzhou University of China and an MBA in hospitality from ESSEC of France. She loves to read and has been a tennis fan since she was a teenager.

Q: How did you first become interested in philanthropy?

A: I have always been a fan of traveling in all forms. This brought me to volunteering abroad quite often. It’s very important to me to serve in a position where I can have a social impact. After several years of working in hospitality consulting firms from Europe to Hong Kong, I went back to mainland China and joined Chi Heng Foundation as a program manager for their international volunteer trips. This was a big change in my career and also my entry point to philanthropy. I haven’t changed my career path since, and I am still in love with it.

Q: What excites you about the future of philanthropy in China?

A: In line with the development of its economy, China’s philanthropy sector has been rapidly growing. This includes the rise in total funds raised annually, the number of foundations and NGOs in total, the number of full time professionals and volunteers in the sector, and the number of highly networked philanthropists. There’s also been an increase in the awareness, willingness, and activeness of public participants in charitable projects. Under this context, innovation initiatives in China’s philanthropic sector have kicked off in recent years, together with fast growth in China’s technology sector.

Q: What opportunities hold the greatest potential for the sector?

A: I believe that there is great potential for internet-based philanthropy to accelerate China’s philanthropic sector in the near future. This will require many resources and efforts, including the establishment of a charitable database in China, the integration of authorized Chinese online fundraising platforms, and the introduction and creation of online tools to manage charitable projects. I also believe evaluation standardization, multi-dimensional benchmarking, and transparency are topics of rising importance in the area of internet philanthropy in China. [Get more fast facts about philanthropy in China.]

Q: What are you eager to focus on as a representative of GlobalGiving in China?

A: I very much look forward to introducing GlobalGiving’s expertise as the largest global crowdfunding community to Chinese NGOs. I hope to provide nonprofits in China with not only grant funding, but also information and ideas that will help them listen, learn, grow, and become more effective. China is a country of great potential and many possibilities for the future of philanthropy. [Learn more about GlobalGiving’s office in China.]

Q: Introduce us to a few inspiring people and nonprofits in China!

A: Mr. ChungTo, Founder and Chairman of Chi Heng Foundation (CHF) and Ms. Cecile Cravoizy from Shanghai Young Bakers (SYB) have been my guides in the philanthropy sector. As a successful businessman, Chung’s wisdom, his vision for CHF, his passion with the field, his caring for the children, and his dedication to pursuing for self-sustainability for CHF have inspired me throughout my time at CHF, where I worked prior to joining GlobalGiving. While CHF touched me for its warmth and the close bonds among the staff, SYB inspired me for its professionalism and focus. At SYB, Cecile has been such a great nonprofit leader with her openness and determination at the same time.

Q: Who else inspires you to make the world a better place?

A: Besides my mentors, I continue being inspired by young people like Ms. Wu Di, my former colleague at UNDP China. Her belief in disability equality and her persistence in disability and inclusion made her the co-founder of Easy Inclusion, which introduced the mind-changing disability equality training. These people, together with hundreds and thousands others, are making China a better country and the world a better place.

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Featured Photo: Education for Blind Chinese Orphans by Bethel Foundation Limited

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