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Spring Bud Project marks 30th anniversary

Updated: Oct 12,2019 10:46 AM    CGTN

A pioneering scheme called the Spring Bud Project, which was launched by the China Children and Teenager's Fund (CCTF) 30 years ago, has helped millions of girls and young women seek better lives for themselves, mainly through educational opportunities.

Under the guidance of the All-China Women's Federation (ACWF), CCTF initiated the Spring Bud Project in 1989 with the purpose of improving school conditions and education levels in impoverished areas of the country.

In the past three decades, the public has donated over two billion yuan (some $280 million) for helping school dropout girls in poverty-stricken areas return to class, improving school conditions, and boosting education levels for millions of left-behind children. The project produced more than one million handbooks to raise awareness and promote the healthy development of girls in China. Millions continue to benefit with each new generation.

On Oct 10, during a celebration held in Beijing, some beneficiaries shared their life-changing experiences. The president of the All-China Women's Federation delivered a speech covering three decades of achievements.

Zhu Xisheng, the secretary-general of China Children and Teenager's Fund, said, "The Spring Bud Project has not only financially aided millions of girls, but also showed the world China's experience in helping poor girls grow up. In the future, we will focus on protecting girls' health, safety, and mobilizing students and their families to participate together in girls' growth."

Attendees understood how significant the project is and what influence it had on millions of girls and their families through a series of heartwarming stories about broken families, lost parents, left-behind children separated from their migrant worker parents or living in poverty-stricken areas with no financial support.

All those who took the stage were able to achieve their potential through education facilitated by the three-decade-old project. Many are now lawyers, teachers, and doctors, who are busy working to help others.

Wen Guixian, who joined the first Spring Bud Girl School in 1989, became the first female teacher from the Hongyao ethnic minority group in China's Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region. Yu Zhuoma was born in China's Tibet autonomous region. Both her parents died when she was little but she is now a college graduate, and works for the Air Force.

Now, all these women are helping others in rural areas live a better life.