China to set up 1st foundation for LGBT fund-raising

By Zhao Yusha Source:Global Times Published: 2018/5/22 22:53:41

China sets up 1st foundation for LGBT fund-raising

China will set up its first foundation to help LGBT groups raise money nationwide, a sign that the government has begun to recognize such groups, who can depend less on foreign contributions.

The foundation was organized by Parents, Friends and Families of Lesbians and Gays China (PFLAG), a Guangzhou-based organization before its 10th anniversary, to better serve China's LGBT groups and help to legitimize LGBT groups in China, PFLAG said in a statement on Tuesday.

PFLAG founder A Qiang told the Global Times on Tuesday that the foundation is undergoing organization. "We are negotiating with the China Social Assistance Foundation (CSAF), a social organization registered with the Ministry of Civil Affairs. Once completed, the new foundation will place its funds under CSAF.

"The foundation will allow us to receive donations from all over the country. This way, Chinese LGBT groups will enjoy more autonomy from foreign funds, and can function more effectively," A Qiang said.

Many Chinese LGBT groups hailed this development as a big success for the LGBT movement.

It is a sign that the government public affairs system recognizes LGBT groups, and that the groups can start raising money, Peng Yanhui, director of LGBT Rights Advocacy China, a Chinese NGO, told the Global Times.

LGBT groups have existed in China for 30 years, but they continue to struggle to register and be recognized, he said, noting that LGBT groups also have huge public welfare needs.

Christina Chen, who is part of another Beijing-based LGBT group, told the Global Times that the foundation will help Chinese LGBT groups free themselves from the influence of foreign funding.

Many Chinese LGBT organizations receive some form of financial support from foreign groups, so these organizations have no choice but to listen to their foreign benefactors. "Sometimes, these benefactors have a harmful agenda," she said.

Years ago, A Qiang decided to switch the group's major fund-raising channel from overseas organizations to individual donations from China. "It's worth my efforts, as it allows me to set an independent agenda," he previously told the Global Times, adding that he has been declining donations from organizations that disagree with his personal values.

"For many LGBT organizations experiencing growing pains, it's understandable that they need to depend on foreign donations to survive. But they need to remember not to be influenced by Western organizations," he said.

Newspaper headline: China sets up 1st foundation for LGBT fund-raising

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