Chinese millionaire. Chen Guangbiao

Chinese millionaire.
Chen Guangbiao

9 B. Money on wire rack 10. men pose with $300 11. $300 Chen poses with homeless men 12. 1971 champion long distance swimmer 13. Going back to the rescue mission

Chen Guangbiao, a Chinese recycling tycoon listed among China’s top 400 richest people, has stunned many by traveling to New York in pursuit to be the first Chinese philanthropist, to feed the homeless, and give away some money to the poor, In New York City.   According to Forbes Guangbiao was reportedly worth $810 million in 2013.  He has pledged to give away most if not all of his wealth before his death, inspired by Bill Gates’ “Giving Pledge”.

Guangbaio took out a full-page bilingual advertisement in the New York Times on Monday June 23, 2014.   Guangbiao announced that he would host a charity luncheon at the New York Central Park’s Loeb Boathouse on June 25, 2014 for 1,000 down –on-their-luck New Yorkers.  But it turned out he was only taking 250 people –picked by the rescue mission.  Each participant believed they would also receive $300 after lunch.  Those who wished to join the luncheon needed RSVP via a Hotmail email address.

VNB magazine was there to cover the story.  According to Guangbiao he was hoping the lunch would show the U.S. that there are Chinese Philanthropists.

Standing near the front entrance of the boathouse restaurant were participants dressed in Red Army Uniforms.

With the assistance of Craig Mayes, director of public relations at the New York City Rescue Mission; Guest were bused in.  Mr. Joseph Djalei, was one of the first to receive an invitation from the mission.   All of the diners headed for the luncheon.   They expressed their appreciation for the high-cuisine handout.   Inside the invited diners, were waited on by staff in suits and bows, and treated to a sit-down meal of sesame-seed-encrusted seared tuna, filet mignon, vegetables and seasonal berries.

After dinner, Guangbiao introduced two badly burned disfigured women, which he is helping to get reconstruction plastic surgery.    Each woman shared there story and spoke about their appreciation for Guangbiao’s help and kindness.   Guangbiao had one of the women to assist him with his magic show , which  ended with bag showing a lighted heart.

Later Guangbiao sang Michael Jackson’s famed “We Are the World” to his guests.    They wheeled out a tray filled with $100 bills, divided into clipped

Later we were informed that the mission’s officials took the $300 dollars back, telling the three men that they would get their $300 back at the rescue mission.

Once the rescue mission officials urged Guangbiao, not to give the guest the $300.   Guangbiao, did an about-face on his promise to give each guest $300. Instead he caved to pressure from the New York City Rescue Mission to donate to the rescue mission facility instead.   In fact when some of the guest discovered that they would not be given any money, an uproar ensued, with some yelling.  “We want it now!”

A very disappointed Vietnam Veteran Mr. Brooks expressed “I would tell (Chen) this is a really nice surprise and I’m very grateful, however I needed that money”  “I could use it to buy some clothes.  The mission is not giving us the money they are keeping it for themselves.”  “Some of us really need that money.“  Another man once known in 1971 as the fastest champion long distance swimmer told us that the lunch was nice.  He added that he would like to have gotten the promised $300.  He has family that he would have send a gift to.

Once the luncheon was over.  The mission informed their quest to return to the bus.   As Chen Guangbiao was leaving, we asked, what is his real mission?  His reply was  “The important thing to me is not the money I’m donating, but to have people take notice of the poor people.”