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January 9, 2010

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City digs deep to help the needy over Spring Festival

MORE than 40,000 Dujiangyan families are to receive subsidies from the Shanghai government for the Spring Festival, city officials said yesterday.

Shanghai is to spend 500 million yuan (US$73 million) on a campaign to help the poor and needy during the festival, covering 1.5 million residents with financial difficulties and 4 million retirees in both Shanghai and Dujiangyan.

Shanghai is the reconstruction partner of Dujiangyan, the Sichuan Province city which was devastated by the massive earthquake in May 2008.

Beneficiaries of this year's campaign will include vulnerable groups such as low-income families earning less than 400 yuan per person per month, university students from poor families, the disabled and retirees.

For the unemployed of local poverty-stricken families, each person could receive 300 yuan.

In addition to the financial help, the city's Human Resources and Social Security Bureau will help family members, especially unemployed graduates, find jobs.

Hu Yanzhao, Shanghai's vice mayor, also wants local civil affair bureaus to offer shelter and food to beggars and homeless people during the festival.


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