Despite its booming economy, rural China remains in deep poverty. Many communities struggle in harsh, mountainous terrains, which suffer severe droughts. As well as severe droughts, there is little infrastructure such as roads, health and education services, which leaves rural populations in China with a small chance of improving their situation. Due to the limited facilities many are unable to read or write, meaning they have little hope of getting a decent job.
We began work in China in response to flooding in the Shaanxi province in 2002. As well as emergency assistance, we helped communities build new homes for the victims of the flooding. Since 2002, we have worked on multiple projects and have expanded our reach and we now work in five different provinces, building essential infrastructure like roads, water sources and health facilities, as well as education and seasonal distributions during Ramadan and Qurbani.
In the high mountains of Yongjing County drought comes every year and makes life unbearable for the villagers. Crops will not grow, the livestock they depend on dies, and the little water they can gather from streams is dirty and makes them sick. As there are regular seasons, Islamic Relief built rainwater harvesting systems which capture the clean rain during the wet season and store it for the dry months. Not only is the captured water sufficient for consumption by the communities it is also sufficient to be channelled to help grow crops. This results in not only a clean supply of water, but also food for the communities to survive during the droughts.