(Hong Kong, Shanghai, 18 May 2017) In response to the central government’s call for “targeted poverty alleviation”, and on the approach of its 29th birthday, Ping An Insurance (Group) Company of China, Ltd. (hereafter “Ping An” or the “Group”, HKEx: 2318; SSE: 601318) designated the 27th of May, the group’s founding day, as the first “Ping An Charity Day”. The Group will also be promulgating the “June 1st Charity-in-Action”, calling upon 1.5 million Ping An staff to take part in a series of poverty-alleviation programs, and actively participate in all charity events organized by the group and its subsidiaries, which covers such businesses as property and casualty insurance, life insurance, banking, trusts, and Puhui Financial. On the same day, Dr. Peter Ma, Chairman and CEO of Ping An, visited the first Ping An Hope Primary School in Lu’an, Anhui Province, where the group first started its “Teaching Volunteers Program”, to show support for this worthy cause. Taking the lead in responding to the clarion call of “June 1st Charity-in-Action”, he set a personal example by getting involved in efforts aimed at alleviating poverty.
In the “Teaching Volunteers Program”, Dr. Peter Ma spent time reading to a class of Primary 6 students in a show of support. Sharing Hemingway’s well-known story Old Man and the Sea, he encouraged the kids to meet difficulties and challenges in studies and life head on, and to never give up. Ping An also donated carefully-selected books and RMB100,000 for the purchase of teaching aids to Lu’an Hope Primary School.
Ping An’s “Teaching Volunteers Program”, which was implemented ten years ago, will be fully upgraded this year with innovative distance-learning platforms, so that village schools can enjoy high quality education resources to realize the goal of targeted poverty alleviation through education.
Keeping the Original Aspiration. Designating the group’s founding day as the Charity Day
This year, Ping An “poverty alleviation through education” programs has undergone a comprehensive upgrade. At the beginning of the year, Ping An formally established the Educational Charity Council, with Dr. Peter Ma serving as the first president of the council. Dr Peter Ma is responsible for Ping An’s education and charity efforts, his appointment has brought the education and charity development program to another level.
In order to allow more employees to participate in the “targeted poverty alleviation” programs, Ping An today issued a proposal to all employees to announce the designation of 27th of May, the group’s founding day, as the first “Ping An Charity Day”, calling on all Ping An staff to show kindness to those in need, concern for public welfare and to give back to society.
The Proposal said that the duty of a corporation is to grow bigger and stronger, and with that, to nurture the community. Corporations should use its own abilities to contribute to the country and to help the nation to succeed. “Ping An Charity Day” was established with the hope that Ping An staff will always feel contentment in their daily lives, from pride in the company’s development to their own personal growth experiences, as well as owning their responsibility towards society.
The upcoming launch of “June 1st Charity-in-Action”, calling on 1.5 million Ping An staff to participate in a series of educational charities program, includes a series of activities, such as, “Teaching Volunteers Program” for Hope Primary School students; Participation in the Ping An Insurance –organized interactive welfare “Poem-writing” courses for students of Hope Primary School; Participate or watch the “Growth Paradise” volunteer program for children organized by Ping An Property Insurance; Through the collection and donation of points, Ping An Bank accompanies children’s growth by offering stories before bed and poem to students of Ping An Hope Primary School; while Ping An Puhui encourages farmers to return to their home towns to reunite with their children and families, and to start their own businesses, through donations; Participation in a walkathon to promote the care of disabled children, and Ping An Trust’s donations for recovery courses for disabled children.
Ping An wishes to integrate a “little love” from each and every representative of Ping An, culminating into one “big love”, and to use the concept of “Everyone can participate in welfare” as the basis of corporate culture, as well as the practice of corporate social responsibility.
Back to Lu’an, Peter Ma joins “June 1st Charity-in-Action”
Lu’an in Anhui Province marks the entry point of China Ping An's public education welfare. In 1993, newly founded Ping An established the committee of “Hope Program” at the suggestion of Peter Ma. In September 1993, the committee sent an inspection team to Lu’an, which was heavily flooded by Huai River at the time. They were shocked by the consequences of the flooding and to see children who couldn’t go to school. In 1994, Lu’an Shunhe Ping An Hope Primary School was constructed and commenced operation.
On the 18th of May, among the first to respond to the call of “June 1st Charity-in-Action”, Dr. Peter Ma returned to Lu’an, this time as a Volunteer of the “Teaching Volunteers Program”, where he gave a lecture to the students about reading and sharing, and calling Group staff to action by actively joining charity activities. As Children's Day approached, Dr. Peter Ma also donated carefully-selected books and RMB100,000 for the purchase of teaching aids to Lu’an Hope Primary School’s teachers and students.
Since the first Ping An public education welfare initiative in Lu’an, Ping An has built 114 Ping An Hope Primary Schools in 30 provinces across the country to help more than 300,000 children living in rural villages to realizing their studying dream over the past 23 years. The characteristics of education and poverty alleviation focus on soft and hard combination.
In addition to continuing to invest funds to improve rural education infrastructure, Ping An also tackled the problem of the lack of teachers in rural areas, as well as the lack of curriculum resources. In 2007, the “Teaching Volunteers Program” commenced operations, and has operated continuously for ten years. Each year, the “Teaching Volunteers Program” gathers close to a thousand volunteers to visit Hope Primary Schools across the country, holding music, painting, sports, English language, culture, psychology and other teaching activities. So far, more than 5,000 volunteers have joined the “Teaching Volunteers Program” with volunteer service time amounting to a total of 220,000 hours, helping more than 100,000 students.
To date, Ping An has invested more than RMB300 million in education poverty alleviation, disaster relief, environmental protection and community public welfare.
Persist for Ten Years Ping An Education Targets on Poverty Alleviation
The Ping An “Teaching Volunteers Program” has been ongoing for a decade, this year the program will undergo a full upgrade. Targeted at narrowing the urban and rural education gap, the program will employ three strategies: use of online and offline channels, teacher resources and technology, and innovation. The Ping An “Teaching Volunteers Program” will also provide four types of support to Hope primary school including hardware, technology, organizations, and awards, marking Ping An’s “Teaching Volunteers Program” as the leader in “poverty alleviation through education” programs
The Ping An distance-learning platform has been created, and will be activated in the near future. The platform will provide online courses, an online library, and distance-learning programs for 114 Ping An Hope Primary Schools. In response to the central government’s call to promote universal reading and traditional cultural education, the first batch of online programs will soon be uploaded, featuring traditional humanities poetry courses. Ping An Life will continue to promote the National Book Donation Program, to help build book corners for rural classrooms. It will also donate books to village schools through The World’s Largest Book Donation Charity Platform.
Dr. Peter Ma stated, “Poverty alleviation must first promote education. Ping An has contributed for more than two decades into areas of poverty alleviation through education, education enhancing strategies, and charity works, in order to reduce the urban and rural education gap, to help rural students out of poverty with the power of education.”
In addition to contributing to the area of poverty alleviation through education for many years, Ping An initiated the “Committee on the Development of Financial Services in Rural Areas” in 2016, establishing a financial service network in rural villages covering “Agriculture financing + grassroots servicing network + advanced O2O network”, and through the four major business areas, namely “Insurance Go Rural”, “Social Health Insurance Go Rural”, “Banking Go Rural” and “Fintech Go Rural”, efforts to reduce poverty through financial services have been greatly advanced. Since 2013, Ping An has completed 114 poverty alleviation programs with a total funding of RMB11.06 million made toward the effort. The group, together with other charity organizations, has become a major force in the fight against poverty.