Story of Nantong (Volume XVIII) – Social progress
By the first half of 2022, nine people in Nantong had been nominated for the National Moral Model, 32 people had been nominated for the Jiangsu Provincial Moral Model, 147 people had made the list of Good People in China, 271 people had been elected as Good People in Jiangsu, and more than 1,000 had been elected as role models in Nantong.
In 1995, Nantong residents were touched by a local who called himself "Mo Wensui", as he continually sent money to help poverty-stricken students. When people looked into him, they realized that the Chinese name "Mo Wensui" actually means "Don't ask who I am".
The person using the pseudonym "Mo Wensui" was Tang Chunyuan, former vice-president of the Nantong Engineering Institute, which was later merged into Nantong University. It took more than 10 years to uncover the true identity of "Mo Wensui". In fact, local government had known long before, but he refused to disclose his identity and did not accept any interviews. He explained: "I do small things that anybody can do if they really want to."
In 2019, Tang died of illness. However, the "Mo Wensui" spirit is still alive and has become a guiding light on Nantong's path towards greater cultural-ethical progress.
As the "Mo Wensui" spirit swept across the city, the Nantong Municipal Committee of the Communist Youth League, together with the Jianghai Evening News and Tayoi Cosmetics Company, established the Jianghai Volunteer Service Station, offering free services to disadvantaged groups.
The station currently has nearly 2.5 million registered volunteers and more than 4,500 volunteer service teams that have carried out more than 440,000 volunteer projects and logged over 37 million hours.
Hai'an-Ninglang Volunteer Teacher Group
The university entrance rate of Ninglang, which was once the lowest in Lijiang, Yunnan province, has topped Lijiang for the past 12 years. This is attributed to a group of volunteer teachers from Nantong who have been working there for 34 years.
More than 280 volunteer teachers from Hai'an have worked in Ninglang and have cultivated more than 20,000 junior and senior high school students and over 10,000 technical secondary school and college students in the county.
Two selfless givers
There are two grassroots philanthropists in Nantong referred to as the "selfless givers" by Xinhua News Agency. They are Hu Hansheng, an old bicycle repairman, and Wu Jinquan, an old knife sharpener.
Hu was born in 1927. After retiring, he helped people repair bicycles. When he saved 10,000 yuan ($1,400), he donated it, and within 14 years he had donated 106,000 yuan in total. He also set up the Hansheng Mutual Assistance Association, which raised more than 400,000 yuan and benefited over 300 people.
Wu Jinquan was born in 1929. After retiring, he wandered the streets by riding his bicycle and sharpened knives. He used all his income helping others. "It is never too late to do good things as long as you are able to," he is quoted as saying. The Nantong Red Cross Society created a public welfare fund in his name and received more than 2 million yuan in donations. "Mo Dao Lao Ren," or Senior Knife Sharpener, was also registered as the first public welfare trademark in Jiangsu province.
Editor-in-chief: Yu Lei
Editor: Wang Yun
Photo by Gu Yao
Translated by Wang Haifei from the Shanghai Waiyuan Translation Agency