The Team

We started in 2001 as a small group of motivated Cambridge University students looking for a way to help. After more than 10 years of seeing our work make a difference, our passion and commitment to changing lives is stronger than ever. There are three critical elements to our team:

  1. Board of Trustees: a selection of 8 volunteer trustees who oversee projects, maintain financial accountability and set strategic direction of the CNYTrust
  2. Beijing team: our team in Beijing is led by Donna Gao, our regional officer. Donna helps to source and execute our projects on the ground in China. In 2012, our Capital Normal University Scholars, with the approval of the Board of Trustees, volunteered to form a Capital Normal University Chinese University Trust Committee. This student-run Committee, which aims to mimic the success of the Cambridge University CNYTrust Committee, is responsible for the smooth running of our migrant children teaching programs and actively seeks to expand our cooperation with existing and future migrant schools
  3. Cambridge University students: the students who form the Cambridge University Chinese New Year Trust are integral to our success in fund-raising. They have been affiliated with the CNYTrust for over ten years and typically organise two fund-raising events every year – a charity run and charity ball

Beneficiary Management: Adrian and Alex oversee the running of our operations on-the-ground in China.

Adrian, based in Jakarta, is currently CEO of Convergence Ventures, a Venture Capital fund that invests and accelerates early stage technology companies in Indonesia. Prior to that he was CEO of Airizu, an online rental transaction platform in China. Adrian holds an Economics degree from Cambridge University, and a MBA from Stanford University.

Alex ( works at Jardine Matheon, a diversified business group focused principally on Asia. Prior to that, he was CFO of Fresenius Kabi Taiwan and a M&A advisor at Centerview Partners and Citi in London. Alex holds a Law degree from Cambridge University and is now pursuing an EMBA from Columbia Business School.

VSO Relations & Development: Sissi and Yang Peng help us to advise and develop our relationships with our associated fund-raising societies, such as the Cambridge University Chinese New Year Trust.

Sissi ( is currently in the final year of her PhD at the University of Cambridge studying Economics. After completing her degree, she will be returning to Hong Kong and joining Oliver Wyman as a Financial Service Consultant.

Yang Peng ( is currently a first year PHD student at the University of Cambridge. She graduated with an Mphil in Planning,Growth and Regeneration in 2011 from the University of Cambridge.  In early 2012, she also spent time as an Analyst at Daiwa Capital in Hong Kong.

Central Operations: Alvin and Jane run all the administrative work related to the CNYTrust, including annual reports, finances and legal work. Their utmost priority is the transparency and accountability in everything that we do.

Alvin ( is Alvin is a technology strategist with international consultancy Accenture.  Based in London, he regularly travels to China and Asia to fulfill his love of food and culture.

Jane ( is a medical advisor based in London for UCB, a global biopharmaceutical company. Prior to this she was a medical doctor in the UK's National Health Service.

Regional Officer: Donna manages the origination of our plans in China, for example, identifying the students, schools and Universities work with. She also leads our Project teams in the implementation phase.

Donna ( is the Beijing-based China regional officer for CNYTrust. She worked with CNYTrust for 3 years on a full-time basis, and is currently working on a part-time basis as she continues her studies. Donna is native Chinese, has studied in the Beijing Foreign Studies University for 4 years and has been studying and living in Beijing since 2001.

Donor Management: Yanlan ( keeps our friends and supporters up to date on CNYTrust’s progress. She’d love to hear from you if you have ideas to email her at if you want to get involved!

Yanlan ( is currently working in London as a scientist for Cancer Research UK, one of the largest cancer research institutes in the world. She completed her Ph.D in Cambridge and is now researching how tissue growth is controlled. 

Where your money goes

For every £1 raised, we aim for 60p to benefit our students. The remaining 40p helps to raise the next £1.

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