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Guizhou county holds lectures to explain new policies

Author:gzstcj  From:CHINA DAILY Time:2018-03-12 Browse:  Size: Big Middle Small

Bijie in Southwest China's Guizhou province has set up the New Era Workshops to help people understand government policies on poverty alleviation and rural development.

As part of the initiative, a lecture on "adjustment of agricultural structure" was organized by the city's Nayong county in its Qiangganyan village on Feb 10. More than 30 locals attended it.

"After removing the costs for seed, fertilizer and labor, corn farmers actually don't make money," Xie Lijie, an official in charge of poverty alleviation in Qiangganyan, said at the lecture as the main speaker.

"If we transfer the land to a cooperative for planting fruit trees, we will receive dividends and also have the time for other jobs. This way we can earn more money than from planting corn."

Xiong Yihong, whose husband passed away in 2016, is raising three children alone. But she is unable to afford her children's education by growing corn alone.

The workshops give her hope, she says.

"I have decided to transfer my land to the village's cooperative to grow fruits."

Xie says officials in the village started to give lectures at least twice a month since July. At the beginning, they had to go door to door to invite villagers, but now people attend them voluntarily.

The content of the lectures involve the spirit of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, village sanitation, environmental protection, rural tourism and poverty alleviation.

Chen Lun is an attendee of such workshops.

Last year, he transferred 0.27 hectares of land to the village's cooperative and started to run a restaurant. His family earned 60,000 yuan ($9,450) from dividends, the annual sale of fruit and the restaurant business.

The county started to set up 454 workshops covering all townships and villages in May. Nayong also provides online services for people through new media. Villagers are able to select speakers and lecture time and date on the official website and then physically attend the lectures in their villages.

Guo Yu, Nayong's director for publicity, says the workshops not only help the masses gain knowledge but also raise Party cadres' enthusiasm in learning more about government programs.

"Cadres who are qualified to give lectures must do training and pass strict exams. Attendees can grade them after listening to their talks," Guo says.

The workshops teach the masses concepts as well as skills.

"We help every impoverished household master at least two production technologies," she adds.

According to government data, some 2,276 speakers in Nayong have given 5,383 lectures to more than 530,000 people since May.

More than 400 cooperatives have been organized in the county to help its poor population with crop and livestock production.

Zhao Yandi contributed to the story.

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