A farmer works in the field in Liaocheng, Shandong province. [Photo/IC]
The key to rural vitalization lies in the people. As such, the eastern Chinese province of Shandong has been focusing on cultivating talents for rural vitalization.
The province has in recent years enhanced the innovation of talent introduction and education, strengthened the cultivation of local talent to serve rural development, and supported all types of talents in rural vitalization.
The province has pioneered new practices to attract young and professional talents to participate in the rural vitalization projects, which have benefitted hundreds of thousands of villagers.
The city of Jining, for example, has launched the "Rural Vitalization Partner" system to match researchers, experts, scholars, technical experts and other types of talents with local villagers to start businesses and improve existing technologies.
Over the past few years, Jining has set up 30 rural vitalization workstations, recruited 591 partners, implemented 485 projects, created jobs for 23,000 people, and increased farmers' incomes by 600 million yuan ($82.72 million).
Under the system, the Jiashantou village in Jining has managed to attract 33 partners to start 33 development projects for cultural creativity, catering and accommodation. These projects have in turn created jobs for 930 local villagers and transformed Jiashantou from one of the least developed villages in the country to a tourist destination.
According to the Shandong Human Resources and Social Security Department, the province has dispatched 800 teachers, 400 scientific and technological workers, 500 medical workers, and 300 cultural tourism workers to support rural vitalization efforts this year.
At the same time, Shandong has deepened the reform of the title system for rural talents and established a new title system for professional farmers in the country. At present, 10,096 people in the province have obtained the title of new-type professional farmers.
Tong Fuxing is one of the earliest representatives of "new farmers" with professional titles in Shandong. He has been studying edible fungi breeding for 33 years and has developed five edible fungus production bases that hire more than 1,000 growers.
In addition, Shandong has implemented a training program for agricultural talent that has benefitted around 80,000 farmers.
It is understood that Shandong will continue to strengthen innovation in the introduction and cultivation of rural talents, formulate and implement a new round of policies and measures to promote the vitalization of rural talents, and develop new methods, seek breakthroughs, and provide solid intellectual support for rural vitalization.