Thinking of you Xiamenese

Dear Mark,
We truly hope that you have escaped the earthquake damage in China. Our thoughts are with you and your loved ones.


I`d like to second the sentiments expressed by Linda.
Every best wish for your safety and well being.

Hoping to hear from you soon,
God Bless Take care

Here as well. Wish the best and hope you and your loved ones are safe and secure.

Holler if ya need anything.

I`ve been studying the map of China, and where Mark works, Xiamen on the coast, opposite Taiwan, is approx. 800 miles from the epicentre of the quake. So with a bit of luck, he should be OK.
Lets hope so.

Thank you, all of you, for your wishes. As Vic-K says, Xiamen is indeed hundreds of miles from the earthquake zone. We didn’t feel it at all; but the interesting thing is that Taiwan, another 100 miles off-shore from here did feel it, as did Beijing which is even further away up in the north-east. So I am fine, and my family is all in the UK, so no problem there.

On the other hand, we have students here from Sichuan. For me, in particular, one of my students with whom I have a lot of contact is from Wenchuan originally. Although her family had moved to another part of Sichuan and they are apparently fine, many of her childhood friends and their families are still living in Wenchuan, and there are other students from the same area, who by last night, had still not been able to get any information about their parents and families. She told me last night that, of the town they used to live in’s 13,000 people, only 3,000 have survived, with similar numbers lost in another town nearby. So my heart goes out to her, and all her friends and their families.

As always the problem is the reliability of the numbers. The official figures are very likely to be an underestimate; but the unofficial figures being spread around, like the ones Zhao Xiao has heard, may be an over-estimate. What seems to be clear is that emergency teams are taking or have taken rather a long time to get there.

Something that annoys me personally is that, late last night, another student friend from a totally different college of the university told me that a donation system has been set up to collect money to send to the victims. My college is participating, but as usual neither I, nor, I imagine on past experience, any of my foreign colleagues have been informed about it by the administration. We are dependent on students mentioning these things only in passing, because of course the students think the authorities will have informed us. Either the central administration responsible for the foreign experts or the individual college administrations should immediately send round information about such charitable causes together with information as to who to contact to make one’s donation.

Thank you all, once more, for your concern.


Good to see you`re unscathed and well :smiley:
What dreadful connotations the word, ‘Authorities’, has attracted to itself of late, especially the likes of Burma et al. Sadly, wherever we look about the planet, ‘Life’ of any kind, seems to have lost the tag, ‘Sacrosanct’ .

Glad y`re OK
Take care


Is there a specific organization that you think we should send $$ too?

I don’t know how many folks are like me and have an intrinsic distrust of the “established” aid organizations, but I would like to do something to help. My distrust tells me that giving to the local groups will just go toward the multi $100K/year salaries instead of into the lives of those who are actually impacted (any one say “katrina”?). So I would prefer something smaller or even better local to Zhongguo* , but if you suggest one of the “old school” orgs I will live with that.


[size=85]* One of the few things I can still remember from my attempts as Cantonese and Mandarin too bad I can’t remember which[/size]

Well, I’ve got the university to send an email to all of the foreign staff and postgraduate and research students telling them about the donation system, through our colleges. Then it will be going through China Red Cross, apparently.

My salary is nowhere within a hundred miles of that, but even 500 kuai … USD60+ … will go an awful long way in rural areas. It’s probably about 4 months’ disposable income in those areas.

How can you contribute? I’m not sure … oh, hang on …

Cash Donations: Money Transfer

USD Account:
Bank: China CITIC Bank Beijing Jiuxianqiao Sub-Branch
Acct.Number: 7112111482600000209
Acct Name: Red Cross Society of China

I don’t think the Chinese Red Cross will swallow up a large proportion of the donations, the way some of our large charitable institutions do.

If you, or anyone else on the forum do send anything, I know the people here will be truly grateful. I have found the Chinese, particularly here in Xiamen, to be a delightful, kind, and welcoming people who are generous to a fault. And they recognise generosity in others.

I told my class this afternoon about us foreign staff not being informed about the request for donations and my plans to ensure that we are given the information … a young man, whom I don’t really know as he sits right at the back in a class of 70 and I didn’t teach him last year, came and thanked me profusely for my concern. And I don’t even know if he’s from that part of China.

So again, thank you all who have posted, or even thought about this terrible situation. I am deeply moved and grateful to you.


Edit: by the way, if I can find anything more local I’ll let you know, but one of the things is it will have to be some organisation like the Red Cross that is permitted to handle US$.