Recently, with a reluctance to leave the snowy plateau, a deep love for Tibetan compatriots, and silent care for the development of Shannan Prefecture, a group of 50 professional technical personnel from Hunan Province in a short-term Tibetan aid programme, fifth of the kind, have successfully completed their tasks and made a smooth return to Hunan province. Fang Song, a teacher of the Department of Network Technology from Hunan Radio and Television University (Hunan RTVU), was one of them.

In May 2017, by means of voluntary application and group selection, Fang Song became one of the members of the fifth group of professional and technical personnel from Hunan Province in a short-term Tibet aid programme. He was sent to stay for a half-year to engage in the technical assistance work at the Distance Education office of the Second Organisation Section of the Organisation Department of the Shannan Municipal Party Committee in Tibet Autonomous Region. During this time, Fang Song, entrusted by the Department of the Organisation and with the passion of Hunan RTVU people, overcame difficulties, assimilated with local society, took active actions and positively threw himself into the distance network technology construction cause in Shannan. Together with all members aiding Tibet, he has become an important power for strengthening national unity, promoting economic development, serving people’s welfare, maintaining stability at the frontiers, and reinforcing its development foundation.

Sending resources and teaching into the frontline

During his time in Tibet, Fang Song’s main task was to formulate rules and regulations of management and usage for the distance education system at the Organisation Department of the Shannan Municipal Party Committee, teach advanced management experience about distance education, shoot and produce a promo video for local Party construction work, build resources for the distance education platform, and penetrate into the grassroots to guide distance education work.

In half a year, Fang Song uploaded 1,420 video resources to the distance education platform of the Organisation Department of the Shannan Municipal Party Committee, covering areas of Party construction, culture, laws and regulations, medical care, and practical technology. To upload the video data, Fang Song lived a life with the grassroots citizens, did research at the production lines, investigated the material and spiritual needs of the local people, searched and downloaded video data by different categories and levels, and even added a lot of information to some resources.

In researching the local agricultural production reality, Fang Song found that the university’s excellent video courses of agricultural technology, “Farmhouse Experience”, were very suitable for local production needs. So he quickly reported the information to the university, which won the attention from the university leaders. The modern education technology centre was arranged to join hands with its Shannan counterpart immediately to share the “Farmhouse Experience” from video resources with the Tibetan compatriots. Due to the slow local network, it took Fang Song seven days to download the video from the university distance education platform. After the video was uploaded, its click rate climbed quickly. Technical expertise such as fish fry breeding, afforestation and livestock diagnosis and treatment, closely related to local production and received widespread high praise from local farmers.

At the same time, as a teacher, Fang Song insisted on inheriting the excellent tradition of sending teaching to countryside schools at the border of the plateau at an altitude of 4,000 meters. He went as far as Longzi, Jiacha and Luozha Counties to hold distance education training for Party members and cadres several times. He has trained about 200 people by traveling more than 1,600 kilometers, contributing to the popularisation of information education in the remote area. When Fang Song went to the farmers’ homes in distant villages to help and guide them use digital TV set-top boxes, each family treated him and his team to their best food and the freshest buttered tea. With the gratitude and passion obtained, Fang Song felt that any fatigue was immediately washed from his body. This has deeply encouraged and moved him.

Fang Song with local children.

Going up the mountains and down the villages to help with the shooting of a TV feature programme of delegates to the 19th CPC National Congress from Shannan

On the occasion of the national celebration for the 19th CPC National Congress, Fang Song assisted the Tibet Satellite TV and Shannan TV to shoot and produce two TV feature programmes to be submitted to CCTV’s Featured Stories of the 19th CPC National Congress Delegates programme. The daily learning, work and life stories of two delegates of the 19th CPC National Congress, Yao Chi, an excellent policeman of Shannan city, and Baimayangjin, head of Mama township, Shannan city were recorded in the featured programme. Fang Song used what he learned and was skilled with to guide local technical persons with character story descriptions, script preparation, filming technique and post-processing, which has better shaped the images of the delegates in a more vivid, three-dimensional and professional way.

During the production of the feature programme, Fang Song followed the shooting crew to mountainous areas and villages. Due to the local geomorphology at Shannan city, it usually takes at least four hours to travel to the nearest destination and up to ten hours, in a jolting journey by car to each distant place. In this process, Fang Song not only had to endure the suffering from the carsickness caused by altitude stress, but also the danger of falling rocks and the car turning over in accidents. Due to the long shooting time and distance during a trip to the countryside, Fang Song suffered from the lumbar spondylosis, which affected his physical movements. But Fang Song put up with the pain and said that the shooting should not be delayed because of him. Fang Song gritted his teeth and used an unopened mineral water bottle on top of his waist and kept moving forward without delaying the work.

In order to shoot a scene in which Yao Chi works late into the night, Fang Song had to hold the camera with his hands, standing at a checkpoint in a draught for hours, which led to a high fever the next morning. However, he went to have an intravenous drip overnight and returned to continue with the shooting early in the morning. The colleagues from the TV station persuaded Fang Song to go back for a rest, but he chose to remain working, with a simple hope to make the best pictures for the best feature programme for Shannan. With his driving force and tenacity, the two films were successfully completed and were adopted by CCTV during the 19th CPC National Congress.

The featured video about Yao Chi, a delegate and excellent policewoman of Shannan city, played on CCTV, for which Fang Song had taken part in shooting.

As a Party member, Fang Song, together with his colleagues in the Organisation Department of the CPC Shannan Municipal Committee and the members aiding Tibet, watched the whole process of the 19th CPC National Congress and carefully studied the CPC 19th National Congress report and the revised “Constitution of the Communist Party of China.” On this basis, Fang Song’s interest in classic works was regained and he continued to search and upload new information and knowledge about the Party construction on the distance education platform. Additionally, Fang Song took the initiative in making and promoting the official WeChat platform for the Party construction of the Organisation Department of the CPC Shannan Municipal Committee,“Tibet Pioneer.” The established new platform for the Party construction of Shannan city brought convenience for communication between the Party and the masses, and improved the work efficiency for local Party construction.

Local leaders praised him as “willing to suffer, having great ideas, daring to take action and persevering”.

After the 19th CPC National Congress, deputy Party secretary of the university, Zhou Yu and his team went to Shannan, extending the care and support from the university to Fang Song. When Zhou Yu and his team talked with Liao Lianghui, a member of the standing committee of Shannan city, the vice mayor, the secretary general of the frontier command of aiding Tibet from Hunan province, Liao Lianghui, affirmed Fang Song’s assistance and guidance in distance education technology given to the local people. He said that Fang Song was a technician who took the shortest time to overcome plateau hypoxia and adapt to the local work and life. Willing to suffer hardships, having ideas, daring to take actions, and persevering, are the symbols of him, which fully reflected the spirits of bearing hardships of the people working in Hunan RTVU and in the field of distance education technology. If possible, he hoped that Fang Song could stay for more time to help Shannan to better improve the distance network education platform.

The experience of aiding Tibet is a life journey and life fortune. For professional technicians engaging in the short-term Tibetan aid programme like Fang Song, they always keep aiding Tibet on the go and in the heart. In the future, whenever possible, the university will continue to send professional technical forces to participate in the national Tibet aid work because of a perseverance in distance education, of the friendship between ethnic Tibetan and Han people, which is like blood, thicker than water, of the precious memories about aiding Tibet with great passion, and because of having the same Chinese dream.

By Zhou Jie, Hunan RTVU