He Cun Village, or “River” Village, is a fitting name for this community that backs up to a large river. A massive canopy tree lies at the center of the village. This tree is aged and weathered, like much of the people that gather under it, including the elderly men that love to play cards and checkers in the shade. Many of the adult farmers have vacated the village in hopes of making more money at a factory job in Guangdong. The annual income for an individual is 2,250 RMB a year which is less than a dollar a day. He Cun is the central village and there are four natural villages that are attached to it comprising of 508 people. Two of these natural villages are located across the river that is 24 meters wide. The current bridge that connects these villages is constructed of pine logs and rope and is loosely supported by piles of rocks and concrete. Over 42% of the people that dwell in Rongshui autonomous county are Miao including the village of He Cun. The Miao people are a minority group in a Han-dominated China. They have their own appearance, culture and language. They build their homes with timber, they make homemade whisky out of sticky rice, and they love to dance!
He Cun Village is fortunate to have access to clean water, unlike many of the other villages in the region. However, another devastating problem that threatens the livelihood of He Cun is the lack of a stable bridge. Fragments of rebar stick out of a concrete block on each side of the river, showing signs of a bridge that used to be. The unstable platforms of pine and rope that are currently in place will certainly be washed away by the next flood. Without a bridge the
two natural villages on the other side of the river will be unable to sell their goods in the market and their livelihoods are at risk. Living on a budget of a dollar a day does not leave any room for risk.
A larger and more firmly established bridge needs to be constructed. This bridge would need to be 24 meters in length and wide enough for the villagers to haul carts of goods across it. The total cost of this project is $15,500. The He Cun people have pooled their resources together to contribute $1,100. China Care International would need to provide the remaining $14,400 to meet the practical need of this village. This region will certainly experience economic development as they will be able to sell their goods in the marketplace anytime of the year. With a structurally sound bridge in place, the 508 Miao people that reside in He Cun will be benefitted, as well as hundreds more in the future.
Guangxi is a beautiful provence full of beautiful people. Unfortunately, it is also one of the poorest areas in China. In 2011, CCI committed to work together to build a water sanitation project and a road in Guangxi Province.
According to a 2010 Guangxi Government survey, Rongshui County currently has a total population of half a million people, 71% are from minority groups, and 39.14% of all the population are made up of the Miao Minority group. 860 villages are not accessible by road and 123,300 people still do not have clean water! There are 320 villages out of the 860 villages that make up Rongshui County that do not have electricity or adequate electricity!
The primary income for the area is farming. The average farmer in 2010 in Rongshui County made less than 400 USD per year. That is just over $1 USD per day. The average income per adult is only $120 USD per year. 46% of the population in Rongshui country fall into the income level of less than $120 USD per year.
119 Kilometers from the town of Rongshui (going north) is a town called Yaoliang Tun. There are 205 families that live in this village with a total population of 981. The farmers of this village are not able to get their goods to and from the market because they do not have adequate roads for vehicles. The difficulties with the roads contributes to the increased cost of their products and often prices them on the high side of the competition. In order to connect to the main road, they needed to build a small road of 2km. CCI worked together with them to build the roads that they needed.
Just down the road there is a small village called Toudaogou. This village is made up of the Man Minority (pronounced “mon”). This is the first time that CCI has ever worked in this minority group in China.
According to a 2009 study in Rongshui county, it was found that more than 60% of the population does not have access to clean water. A survey team was sent out by the government to explore why this was the case and they found that many of the sources that was used in the past had dried up and it takes considerable resources to find and access new ones; resources that the people of Rongshui just dont have.
There are currently 46 families of 216 people living in Toudaogou Village and they do not have access to clean water. The nearest area that the villagers currently have to get water is more than 2 miles away.
With your support, China Care International completed both of these projects this year. The road will help increase the villagers standard of living by increasing their ability to earn a living. The water project will help alleviate their poverty in several ways. It will decrease the amount of waterborne illnesses, decreasing the drain on finances and man power caused by them. It will also increase productivity by decreasing the time and energy used to get daily water needs.
From the people of both villages and from CCI, thank you for your help in these areas.
Although China is more at a rocket like speed in economic growth, the truth is many areas are still existing in third world conditions. Areas in eastern China, with sea ports in close proximity, have benefited from Special Economic Zones and global trading. Jobs in these areas are plentiful and 300 million people, the size of the USA, have access to basic education. In the western areas of China, especially in remote, rural areas, this global trade has not reached the local people. Of the 1 billion plus people still living in poverty, hundreds of millions still have no access to basic health and sanitation, education, or good jobs. China Care International has been helping in these areas for many years, and continues to see the need for schools to be built, or improved for the childrens safety. Some need to be made accessible for local children without school who have no way to reach the classroom.
Guizhou is one of the poorest provinces in China. Many children still dont have access to schooling past the third grade, and some have no access at all. One school that was available was operating in unsafe conditions. Because this school is in an agrarian area, there were constantly animals and livestock roaming around. There was no wall or fence to protect the children and they were being attacked by cattle. This has been an extremely dangerous situation, but the village has no way to do this by themselves. They have asked the CCI for help. China Care went in and help fund a wall that now separates the school area from the cattle being herded or walking free range. The children can now go to school safely and focus on their studies.
Not too far away, in the township of She Qi, there is a much smaller school of 117 students. CCI joined hands with a local charity group to build this school. All of the students are Yi and Miao minority. They grow up speaking their local languages at home. Without this school, they would not have an opportunity to learn Mandarin, the language of trade in China. This handicap would keep them from earning money and through them affect there communities. Going to school for the first three years allows them to learn the language that will help them and their community rise from generations of poverty.
Even after the school was built, there were still no restroom facilities for the students. This presented an unsanitary situation for the children. CCI helped build a restroom for the school, many of the diseases that kept the children from learning and caused their parents to spend precious resources on healthcare are now controllable.
China Care has also been able to conduct a Christmas program where every child received a free backpack with several necessities inside like hygiene, stationary, etc. The children have never received any sort of present, to receive this is so exciting for them. Even learning they will get their own pencil causes them to squeal with excitement. The hygiene supplies, together with the school supplies and the backpack, are all made in Chinese factories, and so for a fraction of the cost elsewhere, CCI is able to give these children more then just a present they adore, we are able to give them a jumpstart in their education.
Thank you to all of our supporters for helping these children have a brighter future.