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Different childhood: growing up at dumping site


10:37, August 16, 2011

A mother walks with her three teenaged kids to a dumping site to pick up rubbish in Guiyang City, capital of southwest China's Guizhou Province, Aug. 14, 2011. (Xinhua/Ou Dongqu)

GUIYANG, Aug. 15, 2011 (Xinhua) -- There are a group of children whose childhood is not accompanied by Barbie dolls but city trash and rubbish odor.

For them, toys may not evoke as much excitement as a piece of ponderous iron found in the dumping site which may be exchanged for a chunk of money.

A sharp contrast to their peers, they have no idea about soccer fields or amusement parks and their world is the dumping site.

Here is Gaoyang Waste Landfill Site in Guiyang City, the largest one in the city which is able to daily process 800 metric tons of city trash.

Surrounding the Waste Landfill Site live hundreds of migrant worker families who live on picking up sellable junk.

For eight hours per day, bending waist, selecting useful waste and accustomed to stink odor, family members can merely make 700-800 yuan (about 110-125 US dollars) each month, only enough to keep the pot boiling.

They live in a tiny room which is usually crammed with four or five family members and garbage stinks up the yard outside.

Children of these families, mostly teenaged, have spent almost all their leisure time to pick up valuable rubbish here in a hope of lessening family burdens.

Some of them are luckier than their pals to go to school despite until more than ten years old.

Children here are long exposed to the filthy environment, making them more vulnerable to diseases. Much worse, their low education level and lack of living skill are doomed to cornered them.

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