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explore: Rural Women
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explore: Rural Women
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Women in rural China have one of the highest suicide rates in the world. Wu Qing at the Development Center for Rural Women believes that empowering women with the idea of equality, giving them out-of-home work skills, and instilling them with a sense of social responsibility will increase their feeling of self-worth and improve their quality of life. To plant the desire for knowledge, the center also started a grassroots literacy program. 

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Segment 1

TITLE
explore
CHARLES ANNENBERG WEINGARTEN
I was shocked to learn that women in the countryside of China had one of the highest suicide rates in the world. Wu Qing founded the Center for Rural Migrant Workers to help women develop their voice and realize they have rights. She's an inspiration to women not only in China, but also throughout the world.
TITLE
Beijing Cultural Development Center for Rural Women
WU QING [Director, Beijing Cultural Development Center for Rural Women]
So I went through all the political movements, including the Cultural Revolution, together with my people. And that's why I'm working so hard to change the system. I want China to be a rule of law, and by law, not rule of man by man, which in a way has lasted for over 2,400 years. But I think we are laying the ground for democracy, and freedom, and political participation, and grass roots -- it's bottom up. So we are doing all kinds of projects. Women's rights are human rights. So I started to pay more and more attention to the rights of women. "Men's place is in the outside world, women's place is at home" is still prevailing in China, even now. I mean, this is universal, right? But then I think it is stronger in China, especially for rural women. These are not cover girls. They are role models. Role models to women. So this is very important. So through this magazine, you know, as a vehicle, we started to know the needs, and demands, of women. Because at that time our reporters often went to out of the way places, especially minority areas, just to find out their needs. They told us they wanted to learn how to read and write. So we started our first literacy projects in 1996.
DOCTOR
Before, men were the ones who were allowed to go out and work. Women could only stay at home and raise children, but now they can go out and work.
WU QING
The most important thing is empowerment. We tell them, you are a human being before you are a girl, or a woman. So, on that basis, men and women are equal. But I have to work very hard, try hard, and sometimes we have to pay twice the price of a man. Because this is a man's world. If you watch television, see who are there, men! They are deciding our future. Is that fair? No, that's not fair. Yes! We want to train women with love, social responsibility, with a kind of a desire for knowledge, with multi-skills, and to be a global citizen.
DOCTOR
As a doctor, I wish the hospitals had better facilities and equipment. They are not as good as I had hoped.
WU QING
With modern technology and IT, everything that happens in one corner of the world will be known immediately, sometimes within a few seconds. I'm not for separate projects for women; I think it's important for men and women to come together, so the men will know what women can contribute. Right? I think this is important, and this is what we are doing. Because if men and women can work together, this world is going to be better.