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100 'mothers' to be hired for left-behind children

By Gao Yinan (People's Daily Online)    08:28, December 01, 2015
100 'mothers' to be hired for left-behind children

The China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation has launched a project to hire and train 100 local women as "substitute mothers" to take care of left-behind children.

The first batch of 100 "mothers" will take care of all the local left-behind children in 100 selected villages across Sichuan province, southwestern China.

The "substitute mothers" will fulfill parental obligations, figuring out what the children need and helping them deal with their problems according to Liu Wenkui secretary-general of the foundation.

The requirements for "substitute mothers" were posted on the governmental website of Sichuan province on Oct 28, hoping to recruit women aged 19 to 55 years old, at least high school graduates with no criminal record.

For treatment, each "substitute mother" will get 24,000 yuan allowance every year and a 10,000 yuan expense account.

"We want to hire full-time 'mothers' to guarantee they won't be distracted by other work," Liu said. "We want local candidates because they understand the local languages and cultures."

If it goes well the program will eventually supervise approximately 35,000 children. By then each substitute mother will take care of about 300 to 500 children, focusing on the 50 to 70 children who need her most.

The substitute mothers' role will be limited, and the program is a transitional way to solve the lack of a guardian, said Wen Huifang, the project manager.

Child psychologists also suggest that parents working in the cities who left their children with family relatives in their hometown not ignore the emotional needs of their children.

"Left-behind children' usually have inferiority complexes, lower self-esteem and lower confidence. Many appear to lack security and are too afraid or feel too much anxiety to interact with other people," Yang Yanjie of Harbin Medical University said. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Gao Yinan,Bianji)

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