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Congratulations to the Transparent Fish team in Beijing, who were recently featured in China Weekly! The article includes background on what the team is doing in China and also an interview with Mr. Chao. As Mr. Chao points out, trust is a huge factor in getting NGOs to work with Transparent Fish Fund; on the other hand, it's an important factor for Westerners interested in donating to East Asian NGOs. As he points out:
“I live in Silicon Valley. Coming to the rural area of Lanzhou feels like crossing into a completely different world. In America, a hero could be like Steve Jobs or Mother Teresa. A good environment can have many heroes, and a diversity of values. It wouldn’t make anybody nervous. But who is the hero for people in China? I don’t know. Chinese people do not have a sense of security. Without a sense of security, how can you trust anybody, how could you be willing to help anybody?”
Read the rest of this quote and the fully translated article on the Transparent Fish Fund blog. Happy 2012 - from the Chao Foundation. It looks like we're already starting on an exciting year!
Happy Holidays from the Chao Foundation and Transparent Fish Fund! We had such an exciting year and are so thankful for everyone who has supported our programs, especially Little Red Scarf, in 2011. We also have a lot of changes coming in 2012, so stay tuned! In the meantime, please enjoy our holiday newsletter.
On October 18th, the Transparent Fish Laboratory’s Chuhsu Tan and full time staff organized the Transparent Fish Fund Launch event to help use a different top down assistance model for NGO support. Transparent Fish hopes to sove the greatest NGO pain points, such as financial management and fundraising challenges. However, Transparent Fish uses a style that demphasizes criticism (telling NGOs what they are doing wrong) and emphasizes offering their services to NGOs in a respectful way, as a partner.
"Nonprofit, public service organizations should make information public."
On the evening of October 15th, Transparent Fish’s “Transparent Finances, Transparent Nonprofit” event in Beijing concluded. Transparent Fish Fund founder Ping Chao and Director Ms. Tianfu Ruan presented the concept of Transparent Fish to representatives from over 30 NGOs. They introduced NGO backend support programs, and continnued with in-person idea exchange. The meeting was divided into three major parts.
The first part was segmented into smaller sections that took the audience from abstract ideas to concrete details, conflicts in moving from concept to implementation, Transparent Financial accounting practices, and Transparent Fish action. Ping Chao personally addressed all participants to demonstrate the heart and soul of the Transparent Fish concept of action. Mr. Chao delivered his expectations of future NGO development trends, and concrete details on the NGO backend support plan and financial accounting transparency methods, as well as his sincerity in his willingness to cooperate. Afterward, Ms. Ruan led Transparent Fish Laboratory staff to demonstrate how to implement the backend support plan and tools. Passion and enthusiasm for service characterized this young team as they shared their work. The testimonies of several current partner organizations also brought great encouragement to the conference participants. Discussion groups were interespersed throughout the section to listen to any concerns or feedback from NGOs that could help Transparent Fish improve its future quality of service.
As we prepare for our upcoming conference in Beijing this October, we are pleased to announce that we have finalized an event space! We also already have approximately 19 NGOs that have confirmed their attendance.
Our primary event will take place on October 15th and will involve various small groups that will have discussions facilitated by key members of our staff. These discussions will help answer questions NGOs have about our program and introduce them to our services, with the goal of increasing the number NGO applicants to become strategic partners of our program. Once they have been accepted as partners, they will be able to enjoy access to all of our free services, from our financial accounting and transparency training, to our SMS and online technology platforms, expert advice hotline and consulting. Perhaps most importantly for their organizations, they will enjoy fundraising benefits through our donations platforms like the one mentioned in last week's blog.
We are continuing to finalize the schedule and guest list for the event, but now that we have a space, we can finally work more concretely on some of those pieces. We look forward to sharing more updates with everyone soon!