Faced with the growing urgency to protect children’s rights, more specifically those of the children affected by HIV and AIDS, FXB expanded its activities in China in 2006 to Yunnan and Sichuan.
The recent economic boom in China has been a story of two halves; big cities have experienced exponential growth while those in the countryside, mainly in the western part of China, continue to live in poverty.
FXB works in the Southern Sichuan province in the remote and mountainous Bu Tuo county of Liangshan/Yi Autonomous Prefecture. This is one of the less fortunate provinces in China, with significant disparities existing between rural and urban populations: almost half the population lives on less than $2 per day.
Bu Tuo County is a typical undeveloped county in China. Its high rates of drug and alcohol abuse, HIV and migration to cities, as well as poor infrastructure and amenities, has resulted in many children being orphaned or left behind. Recent HIV tests administered at a Bu Tuo drug detox center found that more than 36 percent of drug users were HIV-positive.
Bu Tuo has a population of 140,000 people, 95 percent of whom are of Yi ethnicity. With one in five residents living in extreme poverty, a growing population and an illiteracy rate of 73 percent, the community of Yi suffers from malnutrition, deplorable hygiene conditions and a high disparity between men and women. Yi households are usually managed by female heads of single-parent families, the oldest siblings or elderly grandparents, who often struggle to provide nourishment for their families.
Our areas of focus
FXB started working in China in June 2006 and launched two FXBVillage programs in Long Chuan in Yunnan, targeting mainly orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) affected by drugs and HIV/AIDS. UNICEF and the Beijing Institute for Information and Control evaluated these programs in 2008 and highlighted significant increases in household income and assets, a 25 percent reduction in household debt and significant improvements in children’s health, education levels and emotional well-being. Among enrolled children who lost both parents, emotional and psychosocial status improved six-fold since enrollment in the program.
FXB works in partnership with local branches of the Chinese Women’s Federation, which serves women and children in communities across China. By the end of 2013, FXB had completed six FXBVillage programs in Bu Tuo County. The programs were awarded the prize of “Special Contribution and Implication in the Development of the Community of Yi in China” by the National Central University of Research of Yi Culture and the Social Protection Foundation in China. Four FXBVillage programs are ongoing today.
Our future plans
- Bring 360 families out of extreme poverty.
- Extend the plea for education in the community of Yi, which is still very reticent to send children to school.
- Monitor attendance at primary, secondary and vocational schools of children and adolescents of the families participating in the FXBVillage program.
- Reinforce the educational, personal and professional capacity of the women participating in the FXBVillage program.
- Find new partners to replicate the FXBVillage program to alleviate poverty and benefit vulnerable families of Bu Tuo.