Many Chinese people from all round the country are posting messages on BBS, blogs or chat-rooms calling on fellow citizens to join relief work and rebuilding efforts in the earthquake struck area in southwest China.
On Baidu.com, China’s Number One search engine, for example, a chat room has been set up exclusively for posting messages related to relief and rebuilding. Some people said they were willing to organize citizen groups on their own and travel to the disaster area to help, or become volunteers.
People are also expressing support and hope for the rebuilding effort, as well as their concerns and suggestions. Several messages warned about official corruption such as embezzlement of relief funds. Some suggested that instead of trying to send relief to the most affected areas, the government should move people out and send them to other cities to be taken care of. After their homes are rebuilt, they can go back.
A college student suggested that nearly one hundred colleges in Sichuan take summer break early and let the campuses accommodate homeless people from the earthquake regions. These colleges could provide not only thousands of dorm rooms, but also shower and dining facilities.
One notion stands out from people’s online comments, and that is the call for attention to mental care for earthquake victims, especially orphans. Anhui Normal University announced that its psychology department has opened counseling hot lines and posted on baidu.com the cell phone numbers of several psychological professors, promising that these cell phones will be on 24 hours a day.
The central government has set up a national office to guide the rebuilding efforts and opened a websitewhere citizens can submit their advice and comments on the matter. However, as of June 4, there were only five entries on this site while there were hundreds posted on baidu.com.
Earthquake relief chat-room on baidu.com