Ethnic villages benefit from ecological development
Ethnic She women stage a phoenix performance at Muchen township in Longyou county of Quzhou, Zhejiang province on Wednesday. [Photo by Wang Jing/China Daily]
Thanks in no small part to Zhejiang province's Green Rural Revival program, two places with many people of the She ethnic group have significantly improved their living environment through better water and waste management, earning them the titles of "beautiful township" and "beautiful village".
Muchen township in Quzhou, one of 18 with a significant She population, and Pushan village, situated nearby with more than 1,200 She people, were the recipients.
The program, introduced in 2003, seeks to transform rural areas through ecological development. It won the "Champions of the Earth Award", the highest environmental honor bestowed by the United Nations.
In addition, new entertainment facilities have been installed and homestay businesses have been put in place. By integrating their unique culture and customs with tourism, such as phoenix-worshiping, they have developed into popular destinations.
Some 10,000 visitors came to Pushan on a daily basis during the Labor Day holiday from April 29 to May 3, village official Zhong Ming said.
"The development of tourism has not only brought more income to villagers but has enabled them to find employment at their doorstep," she said.
Perhaps more important, she added, the traditions of the ethnic She people can be better known, more appreciated and passed down to future generations.