Former bankers parlay Yushu travels into a fund-raising opportunity for quake victims

PUBLISHED : Friday, 30 April, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 30 April, 2010, 12:00am

Three former bankers who fell in love with the scenery and people of Yushu three years ago are selling their travel photos to raise funds for the earthquake-hit Qinghai region.

Christophe Grosperrin, Yann Muzika and Laurent de Meyere visited Yushu in 2007 for the traditional Tibetan summer festival and were taken by the beautiful landscape and friendliness of villagers.

When the earthquake struck on April 14, friends in Qinghai told them of the devastation and the trio decided to help raise money for earthquake relief by auctioning off 50 of their photographs from their Qinghai travels. 'Although we are just amateur photographers, we want to help the earthquake victims rebuild their homes. We hope to restore the beautiful scenery and the smiles on people's faces portrayed in our photos again soon,' said Grosperrin, now a financial assessment manager.

Because they haven't had much time to prepare for the charity exhibition at the Shin Hwa Gallery (6.30-9pm today, 32 Aberdeen Street, Central), the three have yet to decide on the beneficiaries. 'People tend to forget about things quickly so we want to do the fund-raising as soon as possible when [the disaster] is still fresh in their minds,' Grosperrin said.

The trio plan to visit Yushu in about six months to decide which projects their funds should assist.

'The Chinese government and large NGOs mostly serve the [immediate] needs of the people on the ground, so we plan to fund the smaller-scale, hand-to-hand projects, such as building schools,' Grosperrin said.