The lush groves of sugar orange trees often remind orchard owner Ban Tongmao of a former official in his village, without whom the groves would never exist.
Huang Wenxiu, the former first Party secretary of Baini Village in the city of Baise, south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, helped 418 people like Ban shake off poverty before she died in a flash flood in June 2019 at the age of 30.
"I sold more than 50,000 kg of oranges from the end of last year to early this year, earning over 100,000 yuan (about 15,540 U.S. dollars), while the output of oranges in the village exceeded 1 million kg," said Ban, proudly listing the numbers.
"All this would be impossible without the initial efforts of Huang," he said.
In 2019, Huang was honored as an outstanding Party member. She was an example of Communist Party of China (CPC) members working at the grassroots level who devote themselves to serving the people. They win people's hearts with their spirit of responsibility and dedication.
In the more than one year that Huang Wenxiu served Baini, she visited all the poverty-stricken households in the village to learn about their difficulties and helped them improve their lives.
Wei Naiqing, a 55-year-old villager who has escaped poverty, clearly remembered that Huang had come to his house 12 times, helping him find ways to earn more money and apply for poverty alleviation loans to develop the oil tea industry.
"She helped me wholeheartedly as if she were my daughter," said Wei.
From 2013 to 2020, more than 3 million first Party secretaries and resident working team members were selected and dispatched to carry out targeted poverty alleviation nationwide.
Through continuous efforts, the final 98.99 million impoverished rural residents had all been lifted out of poverty by the end of 2020.
After Huang passed away, Yang Jiexing, the head of a poverty alleviation team in another township, came to Baini and took over her job. He continued to lead the local villagers to improve infrastructure, promote special industries and apply for construction projects.
In 2020, the per capita net income of the villagers topped 15,000 yuan.
"The villagers are living an increasingly well-off life. It's the best comfort to her," Yang said.
In early 2020, Huang Shuli was admitted to Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan as a COVID-19 patient. Peng Zhiyong, head of the department of critical care medicine of the hospital, and his team raced against time, fought tenaciously against the virus and finally saved the critically ill patient.
According to Peng, most members in the Party branch of his department offered to be the first batch of medics working in the ICU (intensive care unit).
"At first, we were all a little scared of this unknown virus," Peng recalled, "However, as medical staff, we should be where the patients are."
After more than 10 days of professional treatment and spiritual encouragement from medical staff, Huang's condition gradually improved and she was transferred to an ordinary isolation ward.
"The medics saved me from death, regardless of their own safety. I'm very grateful to them," said Huang.
Last year, more than 39 million CPC members and officials in China were dispatched to the frontline of fighting the epidemic.
Zhang Guimei, 64, is the Party chief and the principal of the Huaping Senior High School for Girls, in the city of Lijiang, southwest China's Yunnan Province.
Under the auspices of the Party and the government, Zhang helped establish the school in 2008, and it has been a miracle for the girls: 1,804 graduates have progressed to universities and colleges. She is like a ray of hope that illuminates the mountain girls' lives by enabling them to pursue higher education.
Zhang has no children of her own, but she is a "mother" to 177 sons and daughters. In 2001, Huaping County established a home for homeless children and Zhang became the president and has worked hard to raise them since then.
"In my memory, my mom was very strong and could overcome anything," said Lei Qiufeng, 31, one of the first batch of children accepted by the welfare home.
Lei was admitted to a vocational college in Sichuan Province in 2005 and now works in an enterprise.
"Now I'm also a Party member. I want to try my best to help others just like my mom," said Lei. Enditem