The Virtual Foundation - your donation makes it happen
Education for Rural Chinese Girls
Author: Ren Xuping and Xhang Xuping, Rabbit King
Consortium Member: Rabbit King Poverty Alleviation
Status: Needs Funding
Goal: To provide educational opportunities for motivated Chinese girls from rural families who are unable or unwilling to pay the girls' school fees to continue their education into middle school
Comment: Many girls who show strong interest and ability are not supported by their families in their quest for education. The Rabbit King Poverty Alleviation Center (set up by successful Chinese entrepreneurs) identifies motivated girls from impoverished families, and provides them with scholarships and work-study opportunities.
Starting in the Chengdu region, this program is working through schools which serve rural youth.
Donors: Anonymous Family [January 2006]; Middlebury Union High School Model UN Vermont [March 2006]; ECOLOGIA [January 2007]; MUHS Model UN [May 2007]; Jan and Nick Vasilius, Arizona [December 2007]
Photo above: At the site of Sichuan Xuping Rabbit Raising Company - volunteers explain rabbit care to visitors
Ren Xuping and Zhang Shuping, the founders of Sichuan Xuping Rabbit Raising Co.,Ltd., made a fortune through rabbit raising and breeding since the first opportunities for rural Chinese entrepreneurs in the 1980s, under Deng Xiao Ping's leadership. The Xupings have also trained over 300,000 rural farmers in rabbit breeding. Successful rabbit businesses mean that families can stay intact, in rural areas, and adults do not need to move away to factory work in urban areas.
As entrepreneurs with great social responsibility, the "Rabbit King and Queen" have been sharing their experience of becoming rich with more and more people who need help. To become more systematic, and to reach more people with poverty alleviation, they established the Rabbit King Poverty Alleviation Research Center, located in Dayi county, Chengdu city, Sichuan province. (See below for detailed information on the range of their activiites to date.)
Education and Career Opportunities for Rural Chinese Girls
In 2006, the Rabbit King Poverty Alleviation Research Center started a new cooperation with ECOLOGIA / Virtual Foundation. It is an aiding project to help the poor village young girls and their families. The project includes a project of career education to the older rural girls.
Population in Need
The village young girls who are facing dropping out from formal education and need skill training, especially the girls from very poor families
- Help the village young girls to continue their school education
- Provide career training to the rural girls who need to dropout, or who have finished their compulsory education.
- Help these girls’ families to make a practical living plan to have a sustainable living.
- Business Poverty Alleviation: By family current situation researching, we design family development plans for these families. For example, if the family choose Rabbit Breeding as their poverty alleviation plan, and they can contribute their own labor, and a suitable place for breeding rabbits, our center will consider offering training, breeding rabbits (with the poor families, we will use the strategies as Lending rabbits and Returning rabbits) matching with technical support and market insurance. We are expecting to use such strategies to help families permanently climb out of poverty.
- Creating career opportunities for the parents from the poor families: Xuping Rabbit Company can offer some working positions for these parents to increase their families’ incomes. Also, Ren Xuping and Zhang Shuping have many “Guan Xi” (relationship networks). We can try our best to make good use of these Guan Xi to provide working chances for the parents.
- Direct Support: For the families with sick or disabled parents who can not raise rabbits, we give a certain amount of money to support the family children to finish their school studies, or, to offer occupational technologies to improve their living capacities. This is a strategy to help the next generation of a family become self-supporting when the older generation can not change their surviving and living environment.
- Xuping Rabbit Company can directly offer occupational training and working positions for some of the rural girls.
- Offering “work - study” opportunities: Xuping Rabbit Company can also offer “work - study” opportunities for junior and senior middle school students from poor families during the summer and winter holidays. Through part-time work, these students can earn some money to support their studying.
Time-Frame: June 2006——June 2007
- In 2006, support 20 poor families by the way of Business Poverty Alleviation. Xuping Rabbit Company will give an 80% discount for the families to get trainings or breeding rabbits. Each family will receive a matching 2000 RMB ($260 USD) from Xuping Rabbit Company for the training and rabbit breeding.
In 2006, Xuping Rabbit Company will offer 20 working positions for the poor students’ parents.
- Although now we have the Exempting Tuition Policy in the Western China areas [students' families no longer have to pay tuition for their children to attend public schools - Ed.] many children will still have to worry about their living funds, and also may face the problem of stopping studying.[Middle-school students from rural areas need to live in boarding schools during the week,as the schools are located too far from their villages to allow a daily commute to school. Students also need cash to purchase books, school supplies and school uniforms -Ed.] So in 2006, Xuping Rabbit Company is planning to support 10 students from poor families by giving a living stipend. Each child may get 1000-2000 RMB ($130 - $260).
- In 2006, Xuping Rabbit Company will provide 6 “working for studying” positions for 6 students who need such opportunities.
Funds to the girls’ families: 20 households @ 2,000 RMB ($260) ||40,000 RMB || $5195|
|Stipends for girls, school expenses: 10 people @ 2,000 RMB ($260)||20,000 RMB || $2260|
|Project staff costs :|| 3,000 RMB || $390|
|Unexpected costs : || 2,000 RMB || $260 |
|Administration cost (bookkeeping)|| 6,500 RMB || $845|
|Subtotal || 71,500 RMB || $8950|
|VF Administrative fee: || || $895|
|Total requested:|| ||$9,845|
|Fundraising approaches|| Percentage || US dollar amount|
|Self-collection ("match contribution") by the poor family:|| 20 %|| $1968|
|Ren Xuping and Zhang Shuping, personal funds: || 20%|| $1968|
|The Xuping Rabbit Breeding Co.ltd:|| 10%|| $985|
|Raised through ECOLOGIA-Virtual Foundation:|| 30%|| $2956|
|Other kind people, organizations and enterprises inside or outside China: || 20%|| $1968|
|Total|| || $9,845|
Rabbit King Poverty Alleviation Research Center - What has already been done (Jan ~ July, 2006)
- 7 jobs have been provided to the parents of poor girls;
- 6 poor families, including Jia Fulin and Gao Shuijun’s families, have received career training and breeding rabbits;
- 5 girls—Xiaoyao from Jin Tang County, and Li Yaoping, Zhao Linyao, Wu Yanfei, Wang Yi—have been awarded about 4,500 RMB in total.
- 6 poor students, including Zhao Linyao, Wu Yanfei, Zhao Yanrong, Zhou Shuyun , have received part-time job opportunities during their summer vacation.
Photo at right: one of the scholarship students examines an English-language nature book, donated by a supporter
The Rabbit King Poverty Alleviation Research Center has already participated in the following activities:
Helping the poor mothers and rescuing the drop-out children project, organized by the Sorority.
- Helping the handicapped activities organized by the Handicapped League. We gave free rabbit breeding training to the handicapped, and helped many families. Zhang Shuping received the award of "Pioneer of Poverty Alleviation".
- Training for the village youth project organized by the Communist Youth League. More than 1, 000 young farmers who had lost their lands received the rabbit breeding skill trainings.
- Bring science and technology to the village for 6 years; took part in helping action by science, released 5000 documents, providing 10,000 sets of technical documents for public use.
- Our action to help the immigrant families from Three Gorges [families displaced by the Three Gorges Dam project - Ed.] with rabbit raising was praised by the Construction Council of Chinese government and Immigrant Bureau of Sichuan Province.
- Provided experience to the local government on rabbit raising projects. We provided free career training for several counties, such as Yue Chi, Le Zhi, GuiYang in Guizhou Province, and Xinhuang county in Hunan Province, and Lingshui county in Hainan Province. So far, we’ve sent 30,000 sets of documents and about 5000 breeding rabbits.
- Provided experiences for the poverty alleviation project of the government. Change giving fish strategy to giving fishing strategy, in order for a sustainable development of the farmers.
Thus it is truly a good idea to be rich in poor village area, especially the experience accumulated by Xuping Rabbit Breeding Co. Ltd in the past few years.
- advocate the harmonious development of the breeding with environment protection.
- Provided experiences for the poverty alleviation project of the government. The concept is to change from "giving people fish" to "teaching people how to fish", in order for sustainable development of the farmers.
- Luo Xiaofeng, who is one of the losing education (former drop-outs) children, came back to school with our help. At the same time, Che Jinrong, began to raise rabbits. Zhang Shuping often went to visit the poor families, encouraging them to be self-respect, self-help, and traditional virtues. She received the award of "Excellent Enterprise Woman of China, the Advanced Woman in Poverty Alleviation of Sichuan Province."
- Advocate the harmonious development of rabbit breeding with environment protection.
Animal breeding will cause environment problems, which is a common issue of the village development of impoverished areas. Xuping Rabbit Breeding Co.,Ltd has solved the problem by promoting a biological breeding mode. Such as the reasonable use of the firedamp and rabbit manure. The used material can also be used in a fit way to make profit, connecting the operating of grassland and forest center, etc. The usage can reduce the cost of breeding, also can increase the quality of growth of fruits, grasses or trees. These methods are praised by the experts in China, also the common people of breeding business.