At the same time that economic development is occurring in China, over 60 million children are left behind in poor regions as their parents try to make ends meet by emigrating from rural areas to cities. The left-behind children account for 37 percent of all the children in the countryside. The parents of left-behind children tend to work long hours and do not visit their children regularly. About half of them (30 million) do not see their parents annually. According to a survey, in 2014, both parents of 51.7 percent of these children are out of town for work. About 46.5 percent have been left in their hometown without their parents for over two years and over 32 percent for over five years. In most cases, the children are left behind in rural areas under the care of relatives, mostly grandparents, who have little education, family friends, or ability to take care of themselves. Very often these children suffer from serious developmental problems.
Source: China Youth reprinted by Xinhua, March 13, 2015