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Graduate student volunteers during Spring Festival travel rush | Updated: 2024-02-20 14:48
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A picture of Zhou Jingyi working at Wanzhou North Station in Wanzhou district of Chongqing. [Photo provided to]

Zhou Jingyi is a second-year postgraduate student from Inner Mongolia University of Finance and Economics, and 2024 marks her third year working as a railway volunteer, as well as her third experience with the Spring Festival travel rush.

As a local of Wanzhou district of Southwest China's Chongqing municipality, Zhou serves at Wanzhou North Station during the winter vacation. She began to participate in volunteer activities in 2019.

Zhou Jingyi teaches a passenger how to use ticket vending machine at Wanzhou North Station.[Photo provided to]

According to Zhou, she was influenced by her family to become a railway volunteer: "My mother works for public good, which lead me to get involved in volunteer activities."

Wanzhou North Station operates 124 trains per day on average, with an estimated daily departure of 18,000 passengers and an arrival of 19,000 passengers during this year's travel rush.

There are only six railway youth volunteers, like Zhou, working in the station, providing warm services for the passengers after undergoing pre-job training.

Zhou Jingyi gives directions to an elder woman with a child. [Photo provided to]

During the travel rush, she gets up at 6:30 am and arrives at work by 7:50 am every day. "As a youth volunteer, I am on standby at any time, ready to find and promptly resolve the problems," said Zhou.

Her responsibilities encompass assisting passengers with purchasing tickets and boarding the train, maintaining order, answering inquiries, and handling the transfer of priority passengers.

She has to repetitively respond to the same question from different people hundreds of times, but she never loses patience.

"It might cause my legs to ache and my throat to become hoarse, but the volunteer activities warm the people on their journey and paint my winter vacation colorful, as well as enhance my ability in communication and expression," she added.

Zhou Jingyi instructs the passengers to pass through the ticket gate to board the train at Wanzhou North Station. [Photo provided to]

The most impressive experience for Zhou was helping a grandmother with a lot of luggage who found it difficult to enter the station.

"I helped her carry the bags from the entrance to the ticket gates. She kept saying 'Thank you' and gave me two oranges, telling me that 'you look so much like my granddaughter'," she recalled.

She said those were the sweetest oranges she had ever had. "This proves that sincerity can beget sincerity, strengthening my determination to be a volunteer."

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