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23 September Sep 2014 1048 3 years ago

The first “International” spire: the Italian Chinese Business Association Supports the restoration of the Duomo

The spire chosen is number G88

Get your Spire, the fund-raising campaign launched by Veneranda Fabbrica del Duomo to support the restoration of the symbol of Milan, welcomes an important new donor, from beyond Italy’s borders.

A network of businessmen, who have formed a non-profit association, the Italian Chinese Business Association, with the goal of promoting cooperation between Italy and China to foster commercial, cultural and industrial relations between specialist operators and entrepreneurs, has decided to respond positively to the Veneranda Fabbrica call and to become one of the campaign’s Golden Donors.This decision confirms the adoption of a new international strategy by the organisation that has been caring for and preserving Milan Cathedral since 1387, and reflects the sensitivity of other countries to this extraordinary heritage which is renowned all over the world. From the United States to China, it is a concrete challenge to the crisis.

The Duomo is the people’s great monument, which links all the people who have dedicated energy and hard work to it over the centuries. Today, even the businessmen who have founded the Italian Chinese Business Association identify with this extraordinary energy; they will become part of the fund-raising campaign to support the restoration of the Cathedral by donating € 100,000, thus carving the organisation’s name in the marble of the Duomo, the symbol of a worldwide community that communicates.The spire chosen by the association is number G88 (g62 in the construction site numbering system), depicting a saint with a crown of laurel, which is located on the Central Terrace of the Cathedral, visited by approximately one million tourists every year.

«Today we celebrate an important new milestone for Get your Spire: our first international spire. The fund-raising programme promoted by Veneranda Fabbrica is very positive and it is constantly evolving, continuing to grow: a strategy that will last. 
The Duomo belongs to the community, and today’s announcement marks a new stage in an international process which, from the United States to China, introduces new ways of donating: through associations. In this case, businessmen and private individuals have chosen to pool their efforts to help the Cathedral, creating a new association for this purpose: a great sign of sensitivity and attention on the part of a vital, cutting-edge community.We hope that other donors will sign up, particularly in view of next year’s great Expo, when millions of visitors will come to Milan from all corners of the world. It would be wonderful if the people of all the participating countries could play a part in making the Cathedral the shining symbol of the Expo, leaving an indelible mark in the Cathedral marble by participating in the Get your Spire appeal,» said Angelo Caloia, President of Veneranda Fabbrica del Duomo di Milano.
«The Italian Chinese Business Association is proud to support the restoration of the worldwide symbol of Milan. This monument is an icon of peace and open-mindedness, a focus not only for the people of Milan, but for all the communities that live here, including the Chinese community. Because the Duomo is Milan. And Milano could not exist without its Duomo, the home of the whole population. Veneranda Fabbrica has been committed to this task for centuries and is an organisation with an extraordinary amount of energy, which is immediately identifiable with the spirit that has always defined Milan internationally, based on dialogue and popular participation. There was no way we could refuse this great appeal,»declared Aibin Mao, Chairman of the Italian Chinese Business Association.

The results of Get your Spire have been amazing: to date, about € 4 million has been raised, of which around € 380,000 has come from small donations. This is a positive signal from the citizens of Milan that they are rediscovering the Duomo, the heart of the city. Veneranda Fabbrica is active outside Italy too, to raise awareness of the fund-raising campaign among international players. To complete the restoration programme before the Expo, the Fabbrica must meet expenses totalling € 13 million, over € 4 million of which has already been raised.
Veneranda Fabbrica therefore continues on its way also thanks to this important donor.
Italian Chinese Business Association has carved a piece of its history.