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'Red Army' primary schools spread red army spirits

This is a 'red army' primary school, in Central China's Hubei Province.
This is a "red army" primary school, in Central China's Hubei Province.

The morning walk to school is a common daily routine for most Chinese children. But for some living in the country's more remote areas, getting access to a school is not always so easy.

But over the last four years, a hundred "red army" schools have been founded, coinciding this year with the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China. And these little seats of learning are helping to end the heartache of many children with no class to go to.

A desire for knowledge.

This is a "red army" primary school, in Central China's Hubei Province.

These children's lives took a dramatic turn, when the school was founded four years ago.

Yu Jiao was unable to attend classes in the past. But thanks to the help and financial backing of people like Ren Yuanfang, the daughter of a Communist Party leader, Yu Jiao's dream of a good education has become a reality.

For Ms. Ren, nothing beats seeing the look on the children's faces as they show her what they've learned.

At 80 years-old, she's visited more than 30 red army schools across China in the past four years.

Ren said, "The reason for my sponsoring primary schools is to spread the red army spirit."

Many other Party members also take up the noble career, including Mr. Fang.

He donated his life-savings of 1-million yuan to help fund the red army primary schools.

Fang Yaoxiong, Chinese Communist Party member, said, "If I gave the money to my children, they might buy an apartment. But I think it's better to donate money to those who need it most."

Since 2007, a hundred red army primary schools have been founded, through donations of nearly 50-million yuan by Party members.

Their efforts have paid off, and the children seem deeply touched by their actions.

"We will never forget the people who've donated money. Although they all gave different amounts, they have all shown their love for the children," said Fang.

The Red Army schools are allowing those who may never have enjoyed the benefits of a decent education, to experience what many take for granted as a normal childhood - with all the fun, companionship and security that school brings.

(CNTV June 22, 2011)

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