Yu’s charity legacy in Changsha
Yu Pengnian, a Chinese real estate magnate and philanthropist, died in Shenzhen on May 2, at 93.
On a monument in Changsha’s Wuyi Square Tunnel set up in 1988, local government listed in detail the donations that Yu has made to Hunan province since 1981, totalling 16 million yuan ($2.58 million).
Yu, also known as Peng Lishan, was born in Lianyuan city, Hunan province in 1922. He started giving to charity in the early 1980s and has built more than 20 charity projects in Hunan province alone. His charity has funded over 300,000 cataract operations across China since 2003 and helped establish a number of Project Hope schools in the western rural areas.
In 1988, Yu donated 20 buses to Changsha municipal government. A new bus route called “Lishan Special Line” has been running ever since, from Changsha railway station to Dongfanghong Square in Hunan University.
Yu also funded the Changsha Wuyi Square tunnel project, the illuminated fountain at Changsha Railway Station, a rescue center, and the Peng Lishan Changsha Foundation.
Yu founded the Yu Pengnian Foundation in 2002, which is mandated to make donations to health, education and disaster relief. In 2010, he donated his remaining fortune, worth 3.2 billion yuan, to the foundation.
The real estate tycoon thus donated all his assets of 8.2 billion yuan ($1.2 billion) to charity, making him China's top philanthropist. "This will be my last donation. I have nothing more to give away," he said five years ago.
Residents in Changsha take the Lishan Special Line bus at the Wuyi Square Station on May 3. [Photo by Tang Jun/Hunan Daily]
A cataract patient receives sight rehabilitating operation on Oct 20, 2009. On the same day, a “light action” funded by Yu Pengnian to offer free operations to cataract sufferers in Hunan province was activated in Loudi city. [Photo by Guo Guoquan]
The illuminated fountain donated by Yu in the 1980s is still in use in Changsha Railway Station. [Photo by Tong Di/Hunan Daily]
Edited by Zhang Qiong, Andrew Ancheta
Source: China Daily/Hunan Daily/rednet.cn