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Shanghai Sunrise 2021 End of Year Review

The year 2021 is coming to an end, and what a year it has been! Together with our sponsors, volunteers and partners, we helped pave the way to a brighter future for many disadvantaged students in Shanghai.

Here are some of the highlights we want to remember:

Shanghai Sunrise's 25th Anniversary

For Shanghai Sunrise, 2021 was a milestone as we celebrated 25 years of giving back to the community and empowering less fortunate youth. Since 1996, our scholarship programs have helped more than 3,300 local students complete their high school or university education. We are proud of this impact and so grateful for our sponsors’ trust and support.


Our 25th anniversary celebration and fundraising gala at Hyatt on the Bund has been postponed to Saturday, February 12th. We hope to see you there!

To learn more about Shanghai Sunrise’s work over the past 25 years, have a look at a small series of short articles:

Project Regenerate and new sponsorship fees

We embarked on Project Regenerate to review the Shanghai Sunrise mission, focus and value proposition. Our team reevaluated our scholarship and student programs including a student survey and research on changes in education policies and poverty alleviation as well as education-related expenses.

Based on the Project Regenerate findings, Shanghai Sunrise recalibrated its criteria for sponsorship eligibility in order to reach those students who “fall through the cracks”. As the costs of living and attending school in Shanghai have risen significantly over time, we raised our sponsorship fees to ensure that we have a real impact on students most in need. The new high school and university sponsorship fees are 6,500 RMB per year, reflecting the average annual education-related expenses for high school students excluding any additional classes, meals, or ancillary costs.

126 new sponsored students

Over the summer, Shanghai Sunrise visited 116 families who had applied for the Shanghai Sunrise’ high school scholarship program to assess their financial needs and individual circumstances. In addition, we interviewed candidates for our university scholarship. Thanks to great team work and dedication, our staff and volunteers completed all visits on schedule – despite the scorching summer heat, the COVID-19 outbreak and a typhoon hitting Shanghai. We selected 126 new students for our 2021/2022 high school and university scholarship programs, bringing the total for this school year to 236 high school and 136 university students. We welcome these motivated young adults to the Shanghai Sunrise family!

Two student-sponsor events

Shanghai Sunrise organized two big, annual student-sponsor events: “Take Your Student To Lunch” in April and our “Pairing Ceremony” for new students in November. These are unique opportunities for sponsors to meet with their sponsored students face to face and to witness the positive impact of their donation first-hand. In addition, these events help build a sense of community between all Shanghai Sunrise students, their sponsors and our volunteers.

Online English Corner launched

We strongly believe in education outside the classroom. During the summer break, Shanghai Sunrise hosted its first Online English Corner. The program aims to assist students in our scholarship programs who want to improve their English language skills. The 2021 program comprised 14 students and three English native speakers.

After this successful launch, we are excited to announce that the Online English Corner program will continue next year. The next edition promises to be bigger and better than the last, with more than triple the number of English-speaking volunteers signing up to participate.

Generous fundraising partners

In addition to sponsorship donations, Shanghai Sunrise relies on general donations to help pay for program expenses. These include student selection, home visits, sponsor-student events and development programs for our students. We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all individuals and organizations that donated so generously to our cause. Fundraising highlights included Bartra’s St. Patrick’s Day event, Alex’s charity piano recital, Cotton Ding’s birthday donation, a fun scavenger hunt and pumpkin carving contest by The Rooster and last but not least a fundraising dinner by EO Shanghai.

Raising awareness about our mission

Shanghai Sunrise volunteers attended coffee mornings and NGO fairs to speak about our mission which is to create access to education for underprivileged youth in Shanghai.

We are proud of what we have achieved in 2021 and look forward to our anniversary gala, new volunteers, insightful student activities and more students graduating in the new year. We want to express our sincere gratitude to all our sponsors, volunteers and partners for your ongoing support and dedication. We wish you all a wonderful 2022!


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