This article originally appeared on China Development Brief (English) on May 16, 2013.
By Amanda Brown-Inz
Associate Director, China Development Brief (English)
When a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit Lushan, Sichuan on April 20th, media attention turned to fundraising and emergency relief efforts directed at the affected region. For Chinese civil society, the event was immediately framed in comparison with the devastating 2008 Sichuan earthquake, in which almost 70,000 people were killed. The 2008 earthquake has been viewed by many as a turning point for Chinese NGOs, as the government, ill-prepared for the magnitude of such a disaster, turned to local NGOs for aid relief and assistance. These relief efforts spawned a number of Sichuan NGOs dedicated to disaster relief, most notably the Sichuan 5.12 Voluntary Relief Services Center (四川512民间救助服务中心), and led to greater awareness and acknowledgement of NGOs’ role in society from both the government and the public.Continue Reading