As a Third Daughter, Her Chinese Grandmother Wanted to “Get Rid of Her.” But Something Saved Her Life

International   |   Reggie Littlejohn   |   May 10, 2017   |   1:38PM   |   Beijing, China

This Mother’s Day, honor your mother by helping us save girls in China – girls like little Hui-Zhong!

Look at this sweet and innocent face! This is “Hui-Zhong” (not her real name), two months old.  With help from our “Save a Girl” Campaign, she will grow up to know just how bravely her mother fought for her.

She is a third daughter, even more unwanted than a second daughter.  When Hui-Zhong’s mother was pregnant, everyone assumed that this baby would be a boy. Instead of celebrating when Hui-Zong was born, her grandmother wanted her gone and told Hui-Zhong’s mother she had to “give her away.”  Sometimes this means finding a childless couple to take your daughter.  Sometimes this means leaving your daughter in a field to die.  Hui-Zhong’s grandmother cursed at her mother and treated her harshly.  She was angry that she had three granddaughters and no grandsons.

Then on top of this, their village leader discovered that Hui-Zhong’s mother was pregnant with an illegal third baby!  He threatened Hui-Zhong’s mother that she needed to pay him $500 – impossible for this poor village family — to keep the baby a secret from the Family Planning Police.  If the Family Planning Police found out about this third child, at best, the family would have to pay an even greater fine.  Because they could not pay, they might even face forced abortion or involuntary sterilization.

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Hui-Zhong’s mother did not know what to do.   But still, she bravely refused to “give away” her precious daughter.  Hui-Zhong’s mother
resorted to hiding her daughter.

Luckily, a Women’s Rights Without Frontiers’ (WRWF) undercover fieldworker discovered Hui-Zhong’s mother.  Our fieldworker told her that we are helping mothers keep their daughters because girls are just as good as boys.  This is a powerful message in the Chinese countryside, one that most people have never heard.  Our fieldworker offered Hui-Zhong’s mother a monthly stipend for a year to empower her to keep her daughter.  With the help of this stipend, Hui-Zhong’s mother is raising Hui-Zhong.

Our “Save a Girl” program saved Hui-Zhong’s life.  Hui-Zhong’s mother said even though we are strangers, we help her while her fellow Chinese neighbors only make her life more difficult. Note: Reggie Littlejohn is the Founder and President of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers.