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2009-05-17
ADRA China Economic Development
To help impoverished farming families in rural Anhui province improve their financial security, in 2006, ADRA began an economic development project in partnership with the Chinese government that provides valuable livelihood training opportunities and income-generating small loans initiatives for families in need.
 
SILVER SPRING, Md.--The current economic crisis is placing significant pressure on the resources of countries around the world, including China, where the financial downturn has caused an increase in unemployment, lowered household incomes, and sparked rising fears of social unrest, said the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA).

To help impoverished farming families in rural Anhui province improve their financial security, in 2006, ADRA began an economic development project in partnership with the Chinese government that provides valuable livelihood training opportunities and income-generating small loans initiatives for families in need.

"ADRA is fulfilling an urgent need for these poor families," said Sharon Tobing, acting programs director for ADRA China. "A line of credit represents a tremendous opportunity to make important investments, generate alternate forms of income, and begin moving out of poverty."

ADRA has also worked with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), to provide training for more than 90 government officials from the Leading Group Office of Poverty Alleviation located in Huo Shan County on how to successfully manage and execute micro-finance projects, and is providing training and financial assistance for 1,000 low-income rural famers in Da Hua Ping and Yu Er Jie Townships in Huo Shan County.

"This project is making great gains to help families with newly unemployed members, as they battle the ongoing obstacles caused by this crisis," Said Steven Li, project director for ADRA China's microfinance project.

Nearly 42 percent of participants have been women, a fact that highlights ADRA's commitment to promoting gender inclusion. By the project's completion in August of 2009, ADRA expects to have increased the annual income of participating rural residents by at least 25 percent.

The project is funded through a partnership between ADRA International, ADRA Canada, the Northern Asia-Pacific Division of Seventh-day Adventists located in Korea, and private donations. Additional funding obtained through donations to ADRA's Really Useful Gift Catalog will be used to help existing beneficiaries gain access to the formal banking system, opening up opportunities for new project participants to obtain lines of credit.

ADRA has been working in the People's Republic of China since 1998, addressing poverty alleviation and environmental issues through the development of safe, healthy, sustainable, and energy-efficient construction practices in northeast China.

ADRA is a non-governmental organization present in 125 countries providing sustainable community development and disaster relief without regard to political or religious association, age, gender, race or ethnicity.


Author: Nadia McGill
Contact in Hong Kong:
Ms. Sarah Ng, ADRA China Public Relations Officer
Email: sarahng@adrachina.org
Tel: 2838-3991
For more information please visit www.adrachina.org


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