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Slow economy, elections hurting donations to charity: foundations

Slow economy, elections hurting donations to charity: foundations

Taipei, Jan. 7 (CNA) The slow economy in 2011 and the Jan. 14 presidential election have affected donations to charity, with one group seeing donations in December fall by half from a year earlier. Huang Chuan-yu, director of the northern Taipei office of the Taiwan Fund for Children and Families, told CNA Friday that donations to her office in December were down by at least 50 percent from the same month in 2010. "The responses have been lukewarm over the past year, with a significant drop in the number of donors," said Huang, whose organization helps needy children. Just last month, Huang's organization was unable to give 500 hair dryers to underprivileged children as Christmas gifts at a charity event because it could not raise enough money for the devices. "Luckily, we were able to raise the full amount in the end and have already distributed the hair dryers to needy families last week," Huang said. The hair dryers cost NT$299 (US$9.80) each. Huang appealed to the public to donate school supplies, blankets, rice, oil and other daily supplies to the foundation to help disadvantaged children. Abby Chen, deputy director in resource development at the Child Welfare League Foundation, which provides child welfare services, was also concerned about the decline in donations last year, especially toward the end of the year. "Beginning in November, many long-term donors asked to suspend their donations because of unstable work conditions," said Chen, who estimated that her organization had seen a drop of 10-20 percent in donations over the past several months. "Many small donations have also been diverted to presidential campaigns," Chen said. Chen said her organization is looking to raise funds to order 1,038 Lunar New Year's meals at a cost of NT$1,700 each for disadvantaged families to give them some holiday cheer but had only been able to raise one-third of the needed amount as of Thursday. Meanwhile, Chen Shu-lan, a public relations official from the Ren-an Charity Foundation, said her foundation is still 50 percent short of the funding needed to hold annual year-end banquets for homeless people, elderly people living alone and low-income single mothers. The banquets are scheduled to be held at 13 locations around Taiwan on Jan. 11 for an estimated 31,500 people. (By Christie Chen)


Updated : 2021-06-24 06:06 GMT+08:00