My heart broke when I learned of the incredibly hard lives of the elderly widows in China’s remote villages. They have nothing, and no one gives them anything. Their husbands often died leaving a mountain of medical bills behind. For some of them, their husbands committed suicide when they learned they had a terminal illness, as they knew that they had no money for treatment. Some of these widows are themselves disabled and confined to a wheelchair.

The children of these widows are not helping them. Sometimes these children are disabled and in need of help themselves. Most of the widows subsist on a meager diet of rice and vegetables, no meat.

One poor widow lives in guilt because her husband, who was disabled, slept on a pile of straw, which caught fire and he burned to death. She feels that if she had been at home, her husband would not have died, and she cannot forgive herself. Another widow was so impoverished that some days, she would eat only salt. She was contemplating suicide and kept a rope in her room. When our fieldworker found her and offered her hope, she said we are like a divine being, “saving people who are living helpless and hard lives.” Now, with our help, she always has vegetables and often has meat.

How do we offer them hope? Our fieldworker will come to their door and tell them that we want to help them because as human beings, they have great dignity and infinite value. This is the opposite of what they have come to believe, having been cast off by their families and not helped by their government or anyone else. We offer them a monthly stipend, just to help them live. They inevitably want to know what they need to do in return. Our answer: Nothing! This is a free gift, just because we care about them.

These abandoned women are intensely grateful that someone believes that they are infinitely valuable and that they have dignity, even though their own families have abandoned them. They cannot believe that someone from the other side of the world would just help them without asking for anything in return. They have never experienced anything like this in their long, hard lives in the Chinese countryside.

I hope you will join us in helping them!


China has the highest female suicide rate in the world. According to a State Department Report, 590 women end their lives every day in China. China also has a skyrocketing rate of senior suicide. The One Child Policy has destroyed the family structure in China. In the past, the Chinese enjoyed large families and it was not a burden for children and grandchildren to support the elderly. Now many elderly are completely abandoned and destitute, especially elderly widows. And the sad solution for many is to end their lives.

Women’s Rights Without Frontiers is committed to helping Chinese women at every stage of their lives. We help baby girls to be born, instead of being selectively aborted or abandoned because they are girls. Likewise, we help their mothers defend themselves against the pressure to abort or abandon their baby girls. And now we are extending help to elderly widows, to ease their suffering and give them dignity and new hope in the twilight season of their lives.

Please help us help these women!

With gratitude for your generosity,
Reggie Signature

Related Links