Kung fu star Jet Li and Alibaba CEO Jack Ma called on Chinese businesses and individuals to make a difference using a variety of means, the pair said Saturday at the Second APEC Business Advisory Council SME Summit in Hangzhou.
Li's One Foundation asks users to give one dollar or one Chinese yuan per month. "Even that is not easy," Li said, in terms of convincing people to participate. He said that people can also contribute by giving one hour of time per month.
He gave a poignant example as to why he wanted to start his foundation. "Once I was in the hospital, being treated for a neck injury. While I was there, I could see that everyone, no matter where they were from, no matter whether they were rich or poor. Everyone has the same needs. Everyone cries."
"Politely speaking, our charitable institutions in China are 20 years behind our economic development and reform," Li said. "Speaking more directly, they are probably 30 years behind," he added.
Li said that while in the 21st century the concept of corporate social responsibility is established, in some ways, it fosters the wrong attitude. While companies have money to make large donations, it is individual citizens who should take action, who should give just a little bit of their income to help others. "Think about where that one yuan or dollar will come from," he said.