Meet Yu Youzhen, a wealthy 53-year-old woman who lives in the Chinese city of Wuhan but works six days a week as a street cleaner. Yu is the proud owner of 17 apartments worth more than 10 million yuan (approximately $1.5 million). Six days a week she wakes up and goes to work as a sanitation worker for the city, earning a monthly salary of just 1,420 yuan ($227). A reporter for local newspaper, Wuhan Evening Times, discovered her and since then, Yu has become a symbol of hard work and determination in China. She has kept her job, which involves scrubbing the streets and emptying trash cans, since 1998, and grew up in poor circumstances. When she came into the ownership of the expensive apartments in the city in 2008, she was determined not to become lazy like many others who came into ownership.
According to Oddity Central, in the 1980s, Yu Youzhen was just an average vegetable farmer in the Hongshan District Donghu Village, Huojiawan, working hard with her husband in order to save some money. After years working from dawn till dusk, they became the first family in the village to own a 3-storey house. At the time, a lot of people were coming to Wuhan looking for work, and many of them needed a place to stay, so Yu started renting the spare rooms in her home. Each room would bring about 50 yuan every month, and the resourceful woman used the extra earning to build even more houses and add more floors. After several years, she had three 5-storey buildings, most of which were rented out. At that time, everyone was building houses but luck ran out on Yu Youzhen when the policies of requisitioning and redevelopment of land in China came into force. She and her family were compensated with 21 apartments for the houses they had built in Huojiawan.
She wasn’t the only one, who was compensated but she didn't want to end up like other villagers who squandered away their fortunes on gambling, drinking and even drug use, so she made it a goal to set a good example for her kids and act responsible. Yu says, "I want to be a role model for my son and daughter. I don’t want to sit around idly and eat away my fortune". She has warned her son and daughter: “If you don’t work, I’ll donate the apartments to the country.” They have taken her advice as her son works as a driver in the Donghu Scenic Area, making over 2,000 yuan a month, and her daughter is an office worker, with a 3,000 yuan salary. This is interesting. I've heard stories of how people came into wealth and suddenly their attitude to life changes. Instead of them controlling the money, they allow the money control them. I once heard someone say that the true test of a man's wealth is not when he has nothing; but when he is successful and I do agree.