A quake-hit village recovers

09:35, May 16, 2010      

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Though it is Saturday and students did not come -- Hongqi Primary School, in Jiegu Village, Yushu prefecture, is not quiet at all.

The schoolmaster is leading dozens of teachers to move rubble and debris away to make way for more prefab classrooms. The teachers, wearing hats and masks to fight the sunshine and dust, push carts filled with rubble one after another enthusiastically.

Since the 7.1-magnitude quake jolted the area on April 14, the primary school has built 20 prefab buildings with 40 classrooms. And on May 14, one month after the quake, the school partly reopened.

Not one of the 1,000 students of the primary school died in the quake which killed over 2,000 people.

"After the quake, some students had been transferred to other places to resume study. But several of them returned when our school partially reopened yesterday. The village is their hometown after all," said Fu Wencai, the primary school headmaster.

Fu believed that the resumption of the school was important for alleviating the pains of students and their parents. Parents have to pull themselves out of the pain of losing family members and their homes as soon as possible, so they can take their kids to school on time and resume their work.

Nearby the Hongqi Primary School, on the Minzhu Road, the local judicial authorities have set up a legal aid station to provide legal help for quake-affected residents.

Lawyer Chen Yuchang said the station received about ten legal aid cases every day, which were usually about quake-related issues, such as how to get money from the bank if the deposit books had been lost in the quake, or matters regarding the wills of the deceased.

"After the quake, a large number of residents needed a variety of legal aid services. Three legal aid stations have been set up in the village, including two fixed ones and one mobile station," Chen said.

Along the Minzhu Road, a bookstore, drugstore, grain shop, vegetable store and grocery store have all been opened for about one week.

Luo Shili is a vegetable seller. He goes to Xining, capital city of Qinghai Province, once ever four days to purchase vegetables and carry them to Jiegu village for sale.

In his small shop, baskets of cucumbers, tomatoes, eggplants, cabbage, garlic, eggs, as well as a variety of fruits are put on the floor for customer' s selection. The shop is popular. Customers line up to buy his vegetables.

The price is almost the same as that before the quake, customers said.

"I only can sell 1,000 yuan of vegetables and fruits every day, only half of the sales before the quake, as the number of customers was reduced," Luo said.

"But everything is recovering here," he said, adding that he had been conducting business in the Yushu area for about eight years. After the earthquake hit, he immediately took his whole family back to his hometown in central China' s Henan Province.

"However, I cannot help coming back. I have become accustomed to the climate here. More importantly, all my business is here," Luo said.

He felt satisfied about the fact that local industrial and commercial authorities provide free prefab buildings for his family to do business.

His daughter Luo Lan opened a grain shop just neighboring Luo' s vegetable shop. Luo Lan is seven months pregnant. She went back to her hometown with her father for a few days and then came back despite being pregnant.

"I think I have developed a kind of emotional attachment to the high plateau village," she said.

"The government has promised to build a more beautiful Yushu in future. I want my coming child to work in Yushu as well in the future," She added.

Source: Xinhua


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