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Int'l children's agency to aid China in poverty-relief
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08:08, November 14, 2007

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Child humanitarian organization Plan signed an agreement with China here on Tuesday, pledging to facilitate poverty alleviation and rural development in the country.

The cooperation focuses on all-round training of rural migrant workers, management of financial systems in the vast countryside and water environment preservation, said Wei Wei, a program support manager for the England-based agency.

"We want to help farmers to adapt themselves in big cities by offering them necessary skills and social support," said Wei at the signing ceremony in the southwest Sichuan Province city.

"The program will promote cooperation in the fields of poverty alleviation and the building of the new socialist countryside in China," said an unnamed official with the poverty reduction office under the State Council -- the signatory of the agreement.

Expanding the Community Driven Development (CDD) campaign is another priority of the cooperation.

The two partners initiated a CDD program last year in Baishui County of Shaanxi Province in northwest China, injecting 700,000 yuan (over 94,000 U.S. dollars).

In contrast to existing approaches to poverty alleviation, the CDD program encourages local residents to decide their own development priorities while local government agencies shift from a planning role to effective service providers.

"We are satisfied with the achievements so far, so we decided to spread the model to the counties of Yulin and Pucheng in Shaanxi," said Wei.

Both sides are still discussing the details.

Founded in 1937, the plan is one of the oldest and largest international development agencies in the world, working in 49 developing countries. The independent organization directly supports more than 1.3 million children and their families.

Source: Xinhua



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