Li Liguo:China’s philanthropy welcomes new opportunities

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The 2016 Chinese Social Work Industry Development Forum was held in Beijing on June 16. The event was organized by the China Social Work Union, with the cooperation of the China Social Work Development Foundation, the Beijing Social Workers Association, and the Social Work College of the Open University of China. The honorary chairman of the China Social Work Union Xu Ruixin, the chairman of the China Social Work Union Gong Puguang, and other specialists and scholars attended the forum.

By the end of 2015, 455 new social work industry associations had been established in China, a figure 57.4% higher than the equivalent for 2014. These 455 industry associations include 30 provincial ones, 129 prefecture-level ones and 296 county-level ones. Representatives from over 20 provincial and municipal social work industry associations from 14 provinces, including Beijing, Tianjin and Guangdong, were invited to participate in the forum.

The theme of the forum was the mission and strategy of social work industry associations in promoting professional development. Its aims are promoting exchange between senior managers in these associations, exploring positioning and development strategies and promoting the development of China’s professional social work.

Chairman Gong Pugung pointed out that social work has never experienced such a great period of opportunity. The attention paid by the Party’s central committee and the State Council provides strong guarantees for the sector; the increasing need for social services is creating a broad space for the development of social work; and the hard-work of social work associations in the previous ten years has laid down a solid foundation.

During the event, representatives discussed the materials which some of the associations submitted. The forum concluded with a summary of the achievements and problems of social work in recent years, and mapped out a possible development path for social work industry associations.