An entrepreneur couple from east China's Shandong province has returned to their hometown and thrived in business over the past decade, years after they suffered from tragic financial fraud.
Zang Yongzhi is the president of Lüxin Eco-agriculture Development Co. in Zoucheng, Jining.
When she and her husband first started out, they opened a hotel distribution business in Beijing. There, they were diligent and thoughtful in providing good services, and developed more and more customers day by day, having long-term distribution cooperation with dozens of large and small-scale hotels.
Just as business was booming and prosperous, a sudden misfortune threw them into debt.
In winter of 1997, a prospective supplier suddenly fled away with their deposit of over 300,000 yuan which they had borrowed from vegetable wholesalers, relatives and friends. Left with forlorn hope to get back the deposit money though, they decided that they should in no way transfer the losses of the malicious fraud.
Being determined to pay back all the money, the couple entrusted their children to relatives in their hometown and embarked on the journey of repaying their debt.
During a course of three years, the couple slept an average of three hours a day and barely ate a proper meal, surviving on instant noodles, salted steamed buns or pancakes.
Relying on a simple pickup vehicle, they shuttled to the farmers' market in Beijing. To keep their elderly relatives at home from worrying, they concealed their debts and never returned for Spring Festival celebrations.
Bit by bit, they finally paid off all their debts. Afterwards, Zang set up her own food distribution company in Beijing. Whilst achieving another peak of her career, she decided to go back to her hometown to start a second venture, thus better taking care of her family and returning the folks who had once giving them a helping hand.
Zang expressed regret at leaving their children in her hometown alone while they were busy working outside, because after so many years of struggling in Beijing, they seem to be almost strangers to their children each time they went back for a visit.
As a mother, she wanted to make up for her left-behind children, realizing that they had missed maternal love while growing up.
She also intended to offer more care and compassion to other "left-behind" children who lived without their parents nearby, as well as seniors who were not accompanied by their children.
To this end, Zang holds large-scale public welfare activity every month and spares no effort to help people from such disadvantaged groups.
She also personally subsidizes two primary schools by donating 20,000-30,000 yuan each year, and has donated an annual 50,000-100,000 yuan to underprivileged families, and also helps over 100 impoverished children from the surrounding primary schools.
In addition, she voluntarily extends her blessings and sends gifts to such members of society during major festivals including the Mid-Autumn Festival, Spring Festival and other traditional gathering occasions. She also invites them to spend holidays together at her home.
Since its establishment in 2013, Lüxin Co. has been promoting economic development and farmers' employment in the surrounding areas, and has helped over 500 people from neighboring villages to find employment.
Today, founded with an investment of 520 million yuan, the company has grown into a business combining leisure, agriculture and education, and the area she developed has also been assessed as a national 3A-level tourist attraction. In addition, her company has also won a number of honor and awards, including the title of Leading Quality and Credit Units in China's Agricultural Industry, the Demonstration Sites of Leisure Agriculture and Rural Tourism in Shandong Province.
(Source: Cnwomen.cn/ Translated and edited by Women of China)