A charity school funded by a Hong Kong-based foundation was abandoned and turned into a rubbish dump shortly after its construction, according to a Beijing News report on Friday.
Villagers were enthusiastic when it first opened in 2008. However, it was soon closed and converted into a chicken farm before becoming a rubbish dump, the report said.
The school was built under Project Hope, a charity project of China’s Youth Development Foundation. It received 200,000 yuan (HK$248,500) from the Hong Kong-based Lingchuan Charitable Foundation and 150,000 yuan from the Kaili city government, the report said.
The school sits on a hillside nestled between cliffs at Laoshan village in Kaili city. It is the second charity school in Guizhou funded by Lingquan Charitable Foundation. It was intended to provide access to education for more than 200 children in neighbouring mountain villages.
The city's Department of Education explained that many mountain villagers had moved away to Kaili city. Students subsequently transferred to local primary schools in the city, leaving the charity school building abandoned.
According to Project Hope provisions, donors are welcome to monitor its progress, ask questions or conduct on-site visits at any point of the school-building process.
Leung, a spokesperson at Lingchuan Foundation told SCMP.com on Friday that they had been notified by the local government that the school would be closed to make way for a new highway.
Many netizens condemned the way large sums of charity money were wasted and called for an investigation. An editorial on China Economy Net wrote that “officials should be held accountable for their mistakes".
Chris Luo also contributed to this story.