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Grantmaking to China in 2020: Deadlines, Documents, and Considerations

As we look toward another successful year of grantmaking in China, we invite donors and partners to plan their 2020 giving.

by Cole Newcomb (Account Associate, Corporate Giving)

Give2Asia is one of a select number of organizations with permission to fund and manage charitable projects in China under that country’s Overseas Non-Governmental Organization (ONGO) Law. We are honored to have initiated 160 new projects totaling US$20 million in grants since 2017. And there is much more work to be done. The needs in developing regions of China remain vast and philanthropy can make an enormous impact.

As we look toward 2020, Give2Asia is preparing our Annual Activity Plan for submission to China. We invite our donors and partners to contact us as soon as possible and submit their concept notes for future grants in the coming year.


For corporations, philanthropists, nonprofits, and foundations that seek to support projects in China with Give2Asia, we have three opportunities each year to submit proposals for review and approval.

1st Window for China Project Submission

  • November 30, 2019: Deadline for concept notes & commitment forms to Give2Asia
  • December 31, 2019: Annual window for submission to PSU (Professional Supervisory Unit) & PSB (Public Security Bureau) — see the Governance section below for context
  • March 1-15, 2020 (estimated): Grant approved by Chinese government (PSU and PSB)

2nd Window for China Project Submission

  • April 30, 2020: Deadline for concept notes & commitment forms to Give2Asia
  • May 31, 2020: Annual window for submission to PSU & PSB
  • August 1-15, 2020 (estimated): Grant approved by Chinese government (PSU and PSB)

Thanks to our on-the-ground presence and close relationship with the local PSU and PSB, Give2Asia often has an opportunity for a third period of submission. Though not guaranteed, this is the timeline assuming an August 1 submission deadline that has not yet been confirmed.

Tentative 3rd Window for China Project Submission

  • July 15, 2020: Deadline for concept notes & commitment forms to Give2Asia
  • July 31, 2020: Annual window for submission to PSU & PSB
  • October 1-15, 2020 (estimated): Grant approved by Chinese government (PSU and PSB)

Documents Needed

To effectively manage projects in China, Give2Asia needs three documents from funders:

1. Concept Note Using Give2Asia Template

When a funder has confirmed a project with a China-based charity, Give2Asia offers a concept note that includes all of the relevant information for our Annual Activity Plan submission. Give2Asia will review the concept note with the funder and manage the submission to the Chinese government. The concept note template includes requests for the following information:

  • Donor Information: Only the donor name is required. No further details are needed.
  • Charity Information: Overseas funders may only make grants to registered domestic charities in China. Grants to individuals or organizations registered as a business are not permitted.
  • Project Information: A brief project description, target issues, planned activities, and expected outcomes, project location, grant period, sub-grantee or project partner, grant amount, and disbursement arrangements for each grant.

2. China Contribution Commitment Form

This form provides information on the donor, such as the donor’s mission, primary contact, and special requests. It also captures details on Give2Asia’s project and due diligence pricing.

3. Give2Asia Gift Form

This is only needed after the project has been approved by the authorities in China and the recipient charity has passed Give2Asia’s due diligence check. At that time, the funder needs to sign a gift form with Give2Asia. This confirms the donor will provide the necessary grant funds for the project and specifies grant pricing.

More Things to Consider


If the details of an approved grant need to be adjusted, a request must be submitted to Give2Asia. Once Give2Asia reviews the request, we submit it to the Chinese authorities and manage the change process from that point.

  • Adjustments can include: Grant amount, grant period, budget allocations, and select project activities.
  • Adjustments cannot include changes to project goal and project partners

Due Diligence

Give2Asia conducts a thorough due diligence of charities receiving grants once the authorities have approved the Annual Activity Plan. Should a charity not pass a due diligence check, Give2Asia will inform the donor.


China’s ONGO Law requires that Give2Asia be referred to as the project manager in all publicity activities or materials within China. However, corporations and corporate foundations may be acknowledged as the funders. This requirement does not apply to publicity and materials outside of China’s mainland.


Give2Asia holds our work in China to the highest standard of compliance and supervision. We have established a local office with our Chief China Representative Carol Yang and seven other staff in Beijing.

Our activities in China are governed by China’s ONGO Law, under which Give2Asia is responsible for grants made to Chinese grantees.

China People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries oversees our work in China as our Professional Supervisory Unit (PSU). The Beijing Public Security Bureau’s Overseas NGO Administrative Office (PSB) monitors all grants and activities carried out by Give2Asia. At our Beijing office, our staff maintain a close working relationship with our PSU and the PSB to make each project as successful as possible.

As we work together to continue providing philanthropic funding in China, we are dedicated to making sure our donors achieve effective impact. To learn more about grantmaking opportunities in China and Give2Asia’s process, request a consultation with our advisory team.


Photo courtesy of the China Development Research Foundation

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