Monday, 09. December 2013 - 12:12
03. 08. 12. - 13:00
The 40 children dumped on the streets in bins and doorsteps and found and raised by caring Lou Xiaoying have said they want to find the money themselves to pay for her medical treatment - to thank her for her gift of life.
Penniless Lou - now 88 and suffering from kidney failure - saved the abandoned babies from the streets of Jinhua, in eastern Zhejiang province, where she scraped a living recycling rubbish.
As she searched bins and rose early to scour the streets for things she could recycle she discovered the abandoned babies, and rather than abandon them took them in and cared for them herself together with her husband Li Zin - who died 17 years ago. Those she could not care for she found homes for with her friends and family, allowing them to start new lives.
Lou also has one biological child, a girl called Zhang Caiying who is now aged 49.
She said: "My mother has devoted her life to looking after us, me and my bothers and sisters, and we have been enormously touched by the many people that have offered to help her with treatment and donations - and even some that have already sent money.
"But now that she needs something in her life we feel that we as her family want to be the ones to provide that, and to care for her and to thank her for what she did for us. We would ask people not to send donations while we still feel it is within our means to give her what she needs."
She said that people who were touched by the story were welcome to send a card to her mother - adding: "I am sure it would be good for her to get a get well card but we ask at this stage that people not send donations."
(The Chinese address to print and paste on the card is : 浙江金华市金东区东孝街道东关社区枫树小区484号。 邮编：321002 楼小英（收）- The English address: Lou Xiaoying , Fengshu Residential Block No. 484, Dongguan Community, Dongxiao Street, Jindong District, Jinhua city, Zhejiang province, P.R. China. Postcode: 321002)
Her youngest son Zhang Qilin - now aged just seven - was found as an hours old baby dumped in a trash bin. He was found when Lou Xiaoying was 82-years-old.
"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.
"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.
"The whole thing started when I found the first baby, a little girl back in 1972 when I was out collecting rubbish. She was just lying amongst the junk on the street, abandoned. She would have died had we not rescued her and taken her in.
"Watching her grow and become stronger gave us such happiness and I realised I had a real love of caring for children.
"I realised if we had strength enough to collect garbage how could we not recycle something as important as human lives," she explained.
"These children need love and care. They are all precious human lives. I do not understand how people can leave such a vulnerable baby on the streets."
Lou, who has one biological child, a girl called Zhang Caiying and now aged 49, devoted her life to looking after abandoned babies.
Now Lou has become a symbol of kind-hearted charity in China, where thousands of babies are abandoned on the streets by their poverty stricken parents.
One fan 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.
Only last week there was news of a baby miracle lucky to be alive after having its throat cut and then being put in a plastic bag and thrown in a dustbin at Anshan city, in northeast China’s Liaoning province.
The baby – a girl – was thought to be a victim of the country's one child policy where parents restricted to only having a single child prefer boys and girl children are unwanted and often discarded. Although reporting is discouraged infanticide of guilt children is still a problem in rural areas but it is rare that it is observed in the city.
The baby's fate has horrified China.
The youngster was spotted when a passerby went to throw some rubbish in the and saw what he thought was a dead baby in the bag.
He told police that the child was purple and had not moved until he examined the bag more closely – not convinced that it was a real baby.
Medics said that if the baby had been left in the bag a few minutes longer she would have died of suffocation and it had already been affected by the lack of oxygen hence the purple colour.
They said that the baby had been born premature and was probably between 32 and 34 weeks old and weighing just 1.4 kg.
A medic said that if the cut had been just a millimetre deep in the baby would have died.
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