The story of a Chinese ‘angel’ has come to the international stage after details of her rescue of 30 abandoned Chinese babies came to light.
Hailed as a hero, Lou Xiaoying, now 88 and suffering from kidney failure, found and helped raise 30 abandoned Chinese babies in the Eastern China as she struggled to make a living recycling rubbish.
The first child was found in 1972. She and her husband kept four children and passed others on to family and friends. Her youngest son Zhan Qilin, now 7, was found when Lou was 82.
DailyMail: “Even though I was already getting old I could not simply ignore the baby and leave him to die in the trash. He looked so sweet and so needy. I had to take him home with me,” she said.
I took him back to our home, which is a very small modest house in the countryside and nursed him to health. He is now a thriving little boy, who is happy and healthy.
My older children all help look after Zhang Qilin, he is very special to all of us. I named him after the Chinese word for rare and precious.”
China introduced its ‘policy of birth planning’ in 1978 to slow the country’s population explosion. Married couples are restricted to having one child. Those who follow the rules can receive an additional month’s salary every year until the child turns 14. The Chinese government claims that the policy has probably prevented more than 400 million births and in 2010 it was reported that for every 120 boys born there are 100 girls.
Critics inside China and around the world have condemned the policy and accused the government of enforcing abortions. Despite the fact that it is illegal to kill newborn babies in the country, female infanticide and the failure to report female births is widely suspected, especially in rural areas. Faced with governmental punishment many newborns are thought to be abandoned in dumpsters.
DailyMail: One fan of Lou explained: “She is shaming to governments, schools and people who stand by and do nothing. She has no money or power but she saved children from death or worse.’
‘In the local community she is well known and well respected for her work with the abandoned babies. She does her best. She is a local hero. But unfortunately there are far too many abandoned babies in China who have no hope of survival.”
This woman, poor by most standards, found the ability and means to give these 30 abandoned babies a second chance.
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