Mon, Dec 09, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Donation drive for young voters receives NT$2.5m

By Wu Po-hsuan  /  Staff reporter

Taiwan Youth Association for Democracy and National Students’ Union of Taiwan members in Taipei yesterday announce that their campaign to raise funds to help young people return home to vote in next month’s elections has raised NT$2.5 million.

Photo: Wu Po-hsuen, Taipei Times

The Taiwan Youth Association for Democracy (TYAD) and National Students’ Union of Taiwan (NSUT) said that their “2020 Democracy Youth Homecoming Bus Campaign” donation drive has reached its target, with more than 5,000 people having pledged more than NT$2.5 million (US$81,967) as of yesterday.

The campaign aims to help cover traveling expenses for young people to return home to vote in the presidential and legislative elections on Jan. 11.

Young people in the past have not had a high voter turnout, because many attend universities far from their hometowns, TYAD secretary-general Chang Yu-meng (張育萌) told a news briefing yesterday.

The two associations got together to organize the campaign, because government statistics showed that 1.18 million young people are eligible as first-time voters in the Jan. 11 elections, as they have just turned 20 — the voting age in Taiwan, he said.

“The campaign quickly collected more than NT$1 million within 25 hours of its launch, and now it has accumulated more than NT$2.5 million, so we have taken urgent action to expand it to include longer bus routes and have scheduled more bus trips,” Chang said.

“As of now, we can send 3,500 young people from various cities home to vote on election day,” he said.

NSUT chairman Chen Yu-wei (陳佑維) said that the project has connected about 60 universities nationwide.

“Although now we have the funds for about 3,500 people to travel home to vote, there are still more than 1 million university students who are hesitant to go home to cast their ballots,” he added.

Ho Chia-wei (柯嘉偉), head of the student council at National Chengchi University said that there are many events and circumstances making people feel that Taiwan is in a turbulent political situation.

“The simplest option for the young generation is to vote for change,” he said. “We can make our own future by casting our ballots.”

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