China Aid's History
The history of
ChinaAid was founded in 2002 on the announcement of death sentences for five Chinese house church leaders. In response, a mission was conceived to Expose-Encourage-Equip, and ChinaAid issued its first press release after meeting with Members of Congress and their staff, revealed details of these cases with then-Chinese president Jiang Zemin, launched its first letter-writing campaign, and sent its first team of trained human rights lawyers to defend those being persecuted. In the end, the five death sentences were overturned.
Over the past 15 years, ChinaAid’s mission has evolved to one of exposing human rights abuses and promoting truth, justice and freedom by advocating for religious freedom and the rule of law in China. ChinaAid continues to endeavor for the immediate release of prisoners of conscience, equip human rights defenders and religious and community leaders with religious freedom and rule of law training, rescue and resettle persecuted leaders and their families, encourage families of prisoners of conscience by providing financial assistance, and exposing abuse by featuring unique stories of persecution and injustice on ChinaAid’s website and through social media.
China Aid Timeline
ChinaAid’s offices were moved from Philadelphia to Midland, Texas. In the same year, ChinaAid advocated and provided legal assistance for Pastor Cai Zhuohua, whose original 15-year sentence was reduced to a three-year sentence. ChinaAid also provided legal aid to the Xiaoshan House Church.
The Chinese government revoked attorney Gao Zhisheng’s license to practice law. In August 2006, Gao was kidnapped by the Chinese government. ChinaAid led the international community in the appeal for Gao’s release.
ChinaAid provided legal aid for the Xiaoshan House Church case, in which three Christians were sentenced for “supplying intelligence to foreign organizations” and the case of Shi Wiehan, who was tortured for not providing information on other Christian leaders.
ChinaAid partnered with former Taiwanese Vice President Annette Lu to hold the Asia-Pacific Religious Freedom Forum (APRFF) in February 2016, which convened numerous prominent religious freedom advocates to discuss religious freedom conditions in Asia. In addition, ChinaAid held trainings and conferences aimed at equipping persecuted Christians with the theological and legal knowledge required to effectively defend their rights and lead their congregations.
In April 2016, ChinaAid broke the news of the murder and martyrdom of Ding Cuimei, a Christian woman buried alive for defending her church from a demolition caused by a land dispute. The resulting international media attention successfully pressured the local government to rule that the church could keep its land.