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January 17, 2010

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Home » Metro » Society

Rally raises millions for needy

SHANGHAI'S true love for needy people yesterday helped raise 340 million yuan (US$49.80 million) in both money and goods so they can enjoy a better Chinese New Year.

It also helped to restore the eyesight of two people by funding two corrective surgery operations.

The love flowed despite the chilly weather as people gathered for the charity fund-raiser "True Love Under the Blue Sky" organized by Shanghai Charity Foundation on the Expo site.

More than 15,840 student volunteers hit the streets to collect donations and companies donated money and weather-proof items to the foundation.

"It amazed me that few people refused to contribute to the donation bag," said Liu Han, a senior high school student among the volunteers.

The money and goods will go to needy people before the Spring Festival, foundation officials said.

The eyesight beneficiaries were a man devoted to construction of the World Expo 2010 site and the other was a needy man from Yunnan Province who was injured in a work accident.

Zhao Lubang, an official with the Shanghai Construction Group, has worked at the Expo site since construction started.

But a cataract impaired his left eye and his sight recently started rapidly failing.

The foundation paid for Zhao's operation in recognition of his contribution to Expo and in hope that it will allow him to continue working after recovery.

Flying stone

Ethnic Lisu man Ni Ma, 35, was the sole worker in his family, earning a living by quarrying.

But when a flying stone hit his left eye his family couldn't afford the medical care.

Shanghai volunteers in Yunnan learned about his condition and introduced him to the Shanghai No. 10 People's Hospital. The foundation agreed to provide him with a free operation.

Also yesterday, 400 social workers devoted to charity became Expo volunteers. They are expected to expand the influence of charity in the name of Expo, said the foundation.

The one-day charity event was Shanghai's 10th "True Love Under the Blue Sky," a fund-raiser that has become the leading foundation's largest, best-known and strongest supported event in Shanghai.


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