Help Lulu’s fatherless family get the support they need to live well.
Successful CHD Surgery
Lulu was diagnosed with congenital heart disease when she was in the hospital getting treated for the flu. Her family was so poor that surgery was beyond their consideration. In July 2013, with the help of Little Red Scarf, Lulu was able to receive heart surgery. Now her heart is healthy!
Lulu was born in Lanzhou, where her whole family lived for over 10 years. Sadly, three months after Lulu received surgery, her father died from diabetes complications. After her father passed away, the family had no choice but to send Lulu back to their rural hometown to be with her grandmother and to go to school.
The village Lulu lives in now was recently built as part of the New Countryside Transformation Project. Lulu’s mother said the villagers lived inside caves until four years ago, when the government expropriated the cave houses. The villagers were kicked out because the new railroad was scheduled to run through the caves, so new houses were built in the village.
While the exterior of the new house looks magnificent, the inside, however, is cold, empty, and drafty. The family has no money to buy any furniture, and the interior of the house is not painted. Because of the tragedies in the family these past couple of years, they owe a lot of money. The new house costs over $16,000, and there is an $8,000 mortgage. Lulu’s father used to be a taxi driver and left over $9,600 in car loans to be paid. On average, their income allows them to pay about $1,600 of debt a year, as long as nothing unexpected happens. This year they also benefited from the government subsidy for low income families.
Lulu’s mother became the sole provider for the family. She works for a lily factory in Lanzhou and is paid according to each piece of work done. This job is available for 10 months of the year. She can earn about $350–$500 a month, and of that she sends $100 back home to cover living expenses.
The family has half an acre of fields. One-third of that can earn about $300 from growing corn, and the other two-thirds are planted with just enough wheat to feed the family.
Grandmother is Caretaker, But in Pain
Lulu’s grandmother is 71 years old. She hurt her ankle a few years ago while working in the fields, and she still has problems moving around. She often experiences back and leg pain. The grandmother also has to take care of Lulu’s younger sister and brother, who are in elementary school and go home for lunch every day. Their grandmother also has to take care of the fields. She has no money and has never seen a doctor for her foot injury. Now her ankle bone is deformed.
Lulu is very shy and does everything slowly, but she is very responsible and obedient. She is now in seventh grade. There are over 40 students in Lulu’s class, and Lulu’s grades are above average. Since school is far away from home, the school provides Lulu with a free dorm and free breakfast. The cost for lunch and dinner is less than $1 each. Accordingly, the total cost for Lulu at school is about $50 a month.
Hope for the Future
The family believes that they will reap what is sowed. They believe their mother’s diligence and hard work will be rewarded, so that their quality of life will improve and be more secure.
“In the future I hope to work so I can help people in need,” said Lulu. We are touched by Lulu’s grateful spirit and her desire to help others. Please join us in supporting her mother’s efforts to provide for the family, so Lulu and her siblings can live well.
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