China / Society

Former premier Zhu's fund to help 800 poor students

By Sun Li and Hu Meidong in Fuzhou (China Daily) Updated: 2014-07-17 07:05

A foundation financed by former premier Zhu Rongji's book sale revenue will offer about 870,000 yuan ($140,200) in the autumn semester to finance more than 800 poor students in five schools in Changting county, Fujian province, the provincial Education Department said on Wednesday.

The Practical Education Foundation, created by Zhu in January of last year, is aimed at helping students from poor families, improving teaching facilities in less-developed regions and encouraging children to perform better academically.

In May, the foundation sent a team to conduct field research in Changting, a State-level poverty-stricken county, and decided to donate money to four primary schools and a middle school in the county's rural areas, according to the provincial Education Department.

The money will be used to provide a nutritious meal - including an egg and a cup of hot milk - during a class break to students, purchase new desks and chairs, and reward local teachers who are committed and perform well.

Chen Aqing, deputy head of the county, said the project shows the former premier's great support for improving education conditions in rural areas, which she said will inspire more people to join in helping students from poor families.

The county government is inviting bids for providing the meals, desks and chairs.

A special team combining staff members from the county's education bureau and health bureau has been set up to ensure food security, Chen said.

Zhu, 85, served as China's premier from March 1998 to March 2003. He was noted for launching bold economic reforms of State-owned enterprises and promoting the transition from a centrally planned economy to a market economy.

After retirement, Zhu published several books on his remarks and statements during his time in office.

In August, the foundation offered 1 million yuan to reward excellent teachers and support poor students in the Xiangxi Tujia and Miao autonomous prefecture in Hunan province.

The foundation also donated funds to improve students' food and renovate cafeterias in three primary and middle schools in Jishou, Hunan province.

Zhu Rui, president of the foundation, said it will continue to participate in charitable projects that will spread the former premier's care to students and teachers in poverty-stricken areas.

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Former premier Zhu's fund to help 800 poor students

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