Two years ago I was in China and helped develop a partnership between HP, Narada Foundation, BSR, Taproot and Huizeren, a leading capacity building organization in China. Last week I returned to China for the Pro Bono Sino-US Forum. Here, top companies (international and domestic) gathered over several days to discuss the progress Huizeren has made in driving pro bono in China. While there have been bumps on the road, their progress was very encouraging.
Pro bono potential in China
The NGO sector is so new in China (academics reference 2008 as the start of the NGO era) that pro bono can really be built into the architectures of how social innovation is delivered and supported. Similarly, business has only been in China for around 30 years. Thus, there’s a great opportunity to make pro bono part of the expectations of business professionals. I’m extremely excited to see what comes next for pro bono in the region.
At the end of the week, Huizeren presented me with this video with highlights from the trip. They are doing amazing work. I am proud to call them friends and partners in the development of the global pro bono movement.
Aaron Hurst (@Aaron_Hurst) is the founder and president of the Taproot Foundation, a nonprofit organization building a national pro bono marketplace and leading the global service movement through its award-winning Service Grant program.
Based in Beijing, Huizeren was established in 2003 as an NGO that researches and build capacity for civil society through pro bono projects. Since 2011, Huizeren has completed 80 Service Grant projects in strategy planning, IT, marketing, HR, and legal services, connecting more than 1000 NGOs to professional talent at companies. Through these projects, more than 500 professional volunteers have collectively contributed 12,000 hours to pro bono services.