China laid the foundation of its first Women and Children Museum in Beijing on Saturday, located on Beijing's Chang'an Avenue, to boost gender equality and childhood development.
"The museum will fill a gap in China's museum construction history and contribute to carrying forward China's fine national culture," said Huang Qingyi, vice president of the All-China Women's Federation, at the foundation stone laying ceremony.
The project is expected to be completed in 2007 and will open to visitors in 2008, when Beijing holds the Olympic Games.
The museum cover 40,000 square meters on Chang'an Avenue, which is the city's main street. It will have exhibition halls depicting the role and history of women and children, multi-function meeting rooms and other facilities.
The halls for women aim to show women's living conditions, social status, cultural customs and their contributions to the society, while those for children will be interactive and provide a space for their study and recreation.
The All-China Women's Federation and several other government departments have started the relic-collection work both in China and overseas. They plan to gather documents, videos, pictures, costumes, toys or handicrafts concerning Chinese women and children at different historical periods.
(Xinhua News Agency March 25, 2006)