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China provides social relief for the homeless

A total of 2,031 relief organizations have been set up to safeguard the basic interests and rights of the homeless, Minister of Civil Affairs Li Liguo said on Friday.

Of the organizations, 261 are protection centers for juveniles.

In 2013, 2.35 million homeless people received help, including 159,000 juveniles, said Li at a press conference.

Civil affairs offices set up the organizations to help homeless children go back to their families and schools, Li said.

"A pilot program has also been launched in 20 regions to protect juveniles with a focus on family custody," Li added.

According to Li, providing social relief to the homeless has been written into the social assistance regulation, which will come into effect on May 1.

The regulation is the country's first legal document to coordinate and regulate the fragmented social assistance system.

The regulation also calls for open, fair and timely help for the needy.