Goodwill Ambassador Zhou Xun Donates Award Winnings to UNDP’s Yushu Relief EffortsJul 20, 2010
UNDP announced today in Beijing that its National Goodwill Ambassador Zhou Xun generously donated her Champion of the Earth award winnings (US$ 19,975) to UNDP’s Yushu Earthquake Emergency Rehabilitation of Community Infrastructure in Earthquake Affected Areas Project, to meet the immediate needs of Yushu earthquake survivors through providing them with fire-preventive facilities for their resettlement centers.
Regarding the donation Zhou Xun explained: “This is only the start of a long-term commitment to helping communities rebuild better and greener lives. Disaster-affected communities continue working to recover long after the cameras turn off, and through OUR PART, I hope to inspire people to provide them with long-term support.”
Zhou Xun has served as a UNDP Goodwill Ambassador since April 21, 2008, when she and UNDP launched their joint OUR PART campaign to promote environmental citizenship. Part of the OUR PART initiative involves promoting concepts of low-carbon, recycling, carbon offsets and biodiversity through public-private partnerships, including network radio, a comic series and engagement of the private sector. OUR PART expects to increase the number of enterprises and media groups involved in its important role in promoting the International Year of Biodiversity and ‘Building Back Better and Greener’.
As the UNDP Goodwill Ambassador, early this year, Zhou Xun joined UNDP in calling upon the Chinese business community to rally for Haiti Earthquake. She appealed earnestly to enterprises and institutions to provide support to the Haitian people, making personal contributions as well.
Silvia Morimoto, UNDP China Deputy Country Director, said: “We are proud of Zhou Xun for being a role model in recognizing that disaster-struck communities need ongoing support as they endure years of recovery.”
In addition to the fire-preventative facilities that Zhou Xun’s donation will fund, UNPD has recruited 36 local people to serve as firemen to help protect Yushu earthquake victims, through its Cash-for-Work scheme.
About the project
In the immediate aftermath of the Yushu earthquake, UNDP initiated the Yushu Earthquake Emergency Rehabilitation of Community Infrastructure in Earthquake Affected Areas Project, with a budget of US $1.58 million. One component of the project is a Cash-for-Work scheme with US$ 1.36 million in funding from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), which provides cash to locals who assist with such relief activities as debris removal, road clearing and relocation services, advancing relief efforts while also creating local livelihoods, especially for vulnerable groups such as women and “ecological” migrants. Focusing on supporting the removal of debris, the construction of resettlement shelters and the emergency rehabilitation of critical community infrastructures to help protect communities from severe weather and to facilitate their access to basic services, the Cash-for-Work scheme has already benefited nearly 1,200 local resident participants. The project’s other component is supplying mobile toilets to earthquake-affected areas.
In assessing the current progress of relief and reconstruction efforts in Yushu, UNDP found that while more than 68,200 tents have been allocated to Yushu earthquake victims and 3 concentrated temporary resettlement sites have been set up, fire prevention and control were identified as big concerns due to the local windy weather, relatively concentrated personnel placement and electricity utilization in tents and board rooms; there have already been 3 small fire incidents in the resettlement sites. Most of the resettled population is expected to stay in the tents for the upcoming winter seasons, so fire control will continue to be a major concern, as the tents will increasingly require heating.