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Charity to Aid 2,000 Poor Students

The Shanghai Charity Foundation plans to grant educational subsidies worth 2,500 yuan (US$309) each to 2,000 poor non-local college students this year.

The foundation will also give the students 500 yuan a year to cover their traveling expenses back home.

It will offer altogether 35,000 poor local residents who have no medical insurance 500 yuan a year to cover their health expenses and promise them discounts on registration and certain medicines.

Since 1997, the local charity foundation has provided 9.24 million yuan to 6,460 poor non-local students in the city.

It has given 44.51 million yuan to about 89,000 people for their medical bills.

Cao Xiaobing, who grew up in a farmer's family in Shanxi Province, completed his study at East China University of Science and Technology with the foundation's financial support for four years.

He donated 1,000 yuan last December to help a poor student like him.

"Now I've started a career and begun to realize the hardship of earning money. So I have become more grateful to all those who once helped me," he said. "I donate because I hope that more poor students can have a bright future."

The foundation will name 30 individuals and companies that have made great contributions to the city's charity "Shanghai Charity Stars" for 2005 and 2006.

It has begun accepting public nominations. Foreigners and overseas Chinese are also entitled as long as they have been living in the city for three years. To nominate a "Charity Star" call 6258-4343.

(Shanghai Daily July 26, 2005)

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