With over 20 years of his life living in his old house, Li Yingchuan had never thought he would move into a new house one day. “It feels like moving to a place of happiness”, Li said with satisfaction when talking about his new house.
Li now lives in Fumin New Village of Huanghuatan Community, Home for rural residents relocated from environmentally vulnerable and impoverished areas in Gulang County, Northwest China’s Gansu Province.
Chinese President Xi Jinping visits local resident Li Yingchuan's new home at Huanghuatan community in Gulang County of Wuwei City, Northwest China's Gansu Province, on August 21, 2019. (File Photos: Xinhua)
Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Li’s new home on August 21, 2019 during an inspection tour in Gansu, asking villagers about their livelihood and progress on poverty relief in the village during the chat with Li’s family in the living room. The photo of the scene is now displayed in Li’s living room.
When Xi looked around inside and outside Li’s house, he checked the tap water in the kitchen and toilet hygiene.
Hearing that Li and other villagers carried water with donkeys from the river before, Xi took the water from the tap with his hand and said it was clean.
In the past, a majority of residents in Fumin New village lived in mountainous areas of southern Gulang County, which are unfit for human life. The relocation not only benefits villagers’ lives, but also helps the whole county embrace the future.
“No more requirements, it’s really good.”
With the help of a government subsidy and relocation loan, Li’s family moved into the new house in 2018.
Transportation, medical treatment and education were inconvenient in the past and the harvest depended on the weather, Li’s wife Wang Julian said.
“After moving down from the mountains, our life has changed a lot and everything became convenient. Our children can go to the school nearby,” she said.
When asked if there was any other requirement by President Xi, Li said “No more requirements, it’s really good.”
Villages moved from the mountains
Since 2012, Gulang has continuously implemented the project of poverty reduction and relocation in the Huanghuatan ecological migrant area. A small ecological migrant town with 12 new immigrant villages and 62,400 people from 73 villages of 11 towns have been relocated from poverty-stricken areas.
During his inspection, Xi stressed that while lifting people out of poverty was the first step, efforts should be made to ensure the relocated residents can settle down, have jobs, earn money and lead better lives.
A drone view of Fumin New Village taken on December 2, 2019.
Multiple channels to achieve prosperity
“Not only the place of residence but also the production and living forms have fundamentally changed,” said Hu Zhongshan, an official in Gulang, on the important role the government and professional cooperatives play during the agricultural model transformation.
Villagers in Huanghuatan migrant area are guided to develop protected agricultural projects such as vegetable planting in solar greenhouses, cattle and sheep breeding.
In 2019, 20,300 people from 6,052 households were lifted out of poverty in Gulang County, meeting the standard of poverty alleviation of the whole county.
Li now wants to set up a farming cooperative to better serve the villagers.
“My wish in the new year is to strive for a better life and to live up to President Xi’s expectations,” he said.
(Compiled by Jiao Jingxian)