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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Open a Door

Blessing Hands
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Open a Door for Wei Haitao, Give a University Scholarship 
 Wei Haitao.
Wei Haitao (韦海涛) has worked very hard to get into a university. He even took his last year of high school twice to make a higher score on the all important national test. He improved his test score by 100 points, which is a great achievement in one year, and has been accepted by the university of his choice. Please help him achieve his dream.

I'm Wei Haitao from Qinzhou No.1 Middle School. Though I can get into a university, my family cannot afford money for me to go to university.  I need someone to help me, so I can get through difficulties.

I don't know if it is too selfish when your country is in economic crisis to put forward such requests, but on behalf of the poor, I need knowledge to change my destiny. I have a dream that one day I can become a Chemistry teacher. 
My father has had diabetes since I was three years old and requires daily injections that cost a lot of money. He can't do any heavy jobs, and my family doesn't have enough land to grow crops to make money. My grandmother's body is poor also. 
If I can go to university, my dream will be realized, and I will have the ability to help more people. I hope I can do more blessings. No matter at school or in society, I will spread the spirit of Blessing Hands. I wish I can get the chance.
 Wei Haitao  

Wei already has one person willing to give toward his scholarship, but it is not the complete amount. Please help finish up the scholarship by giving $250.

You can donate $250 at this linkScroll to the bottom of the page to find the button to give a college scholarship for one semester.
Penpals now have Computers 

For the Upcoming School Year

Computers will Assist the Pen Pal Program

Amy Qin received a computer for the pen pals at her school, Yangshuo Experimental Middle School of Foreign Languages 阳朔镇外语实验中学
While I was in Yangshuo, I got to see the three computers that we are putting at the high schools and one lower middle school to assist in our pen pal exchanges.  We have had Sister School matches with the USA schools but pen pal letters have been difficult to get back and forth physically due to distance, time and expense.  Now that the schools have these computers dedicated for the use of pen pal exchanges, we hope to improve our pen pal program. The computers were donated by a charity in Hong Kong.
Schools in China tend to fear their students will waste time on computers. They have Internet cafes there, but students under 18 are not allowed to use them and our students can't afford them anyway. With these dedicated computers, the students can write during their free time on Sunday afternoons. They are boarding students so the school sets their activities and schedules.
Luo Huali (Yaya)罗华丽
We have a new staff member in Yangshuo who can help facilitate these Sister School exchanges now. Luo Huali (Yaya) will be assisting Gloria Wei with the Sister School boxes that the schools exchange each year. She is a recent graduate from Guangxi Normal University and teaches in a language school in Yangshuo also. I am relieved to have someone people can write in English to deal with sponsorship and pen pal information. She was willing to volunteer, but we wanted her to do more than a volunteer, so we put her on staff. She is from the Buyi minority and understands the challenges our students face. She will also do translation and arrange visits of sponsors  to Yangshuo. 
4 New Scholarships

Yaya will also help with administrating college scholarships. We have 2 new scholarships sponsored in Yangshuo so far and 2 in Qinzhou. We will feature two more students needing scholarships in our next newsletter. Many of our scholarship students from past years also lack complete sponsorships for one reason or another. If you would like to give to one of them, please write me at this e-mail.

Update on Wei Senbao(韦森宝)

Wei and his Mom are back home in Longfu Township now. Doctors are looking for the best treatment of his birth defect. He has a cyst formed before birth in his lymphatic system. It is not connected to the rest of his lymphatic system, but grows as he ages. It is not life threatening right now, but will need to be treated.  Beijing doctors have promised to share his MRI, and we hope to have more expert opinions soon.

Treatment is available
We are still raising money for his eventual operation. Many people have shown him and his Mom kindness, He has been featured in a Chinese Newspaper and a pharmacist at the Nanning Hospital gave money toward his travel.
Donor giving the family money
Newspaper article about Wei
 We have made a page about him on our website. You can also give for his 

treatment there. Look on our home page for his picture. It will take you
directly to the page.
Thanks goes to Mandy Ma, who has taken his case to heart and gone out of her way to get him to doctors. Dr. Tang at Longfu hospital and his staff have also been a great help.
He still needs a miracle.
Betty Cutts

Monday, August 23, 2010


Latest Update on Wei Senbao 
We Have a  Diagnosis 
I had to look it up online. This is what I found.  
"A cystic hygroma is a mass that commonly occurs in the head and neck area. It is a birth defect. Treatment involves complete removal of the abnormal tissue whenever possible. However, cystic hygromas can often invade other neck structures, making this impossible.
A cystic hygroma occurs as the baby grows in the womb. It forms from pieces of material that carry fluid and white blood cells. Such material is called embryonic lymphatic tissue. After birth, a cystic hygroma usually looks like a soft bulge under the skin. The cyst may not be recognized at birth. It typically grows as the child does.
The outlook is good if surgery can totally remove the abnormal tissue. In cases where complete removal is not possible, the cystic hygroma commonly returns. The outcome may also depend on what other chromosomal abnormalities or birth defects, if any, are present."
"Lymphangiomas represent hamartomatous malformations with no risk of malignant transformation. In the case of cystic hygroma, total surgical excision is appropriate to prevent complications such as respiratory compromise, aspiration, and infections in critical areas, such as the neck. Lymphangiomas have a strong tendency for local recurrence unless they are completely excised. Recurrent episodes of cellulitis and minor bleeding are not uncommon. The reason that these embryonic lymph sacs remain disconnected from the rest of the lymphatic system is not known. "
How to Give?
Everyone wants to help him. We just need to consider how best to do it.  Lets give for his treatment. He is such a cute child.  How would you feel if he was your son or grandson? 
Donations are needed to make sure he gets the best of care.
In Taiwan, David Hsieh has already raised over $560 and will wire it to China. You can give through him by contacting his
Current Status of Wei and his Mother
It has been decided to not do surgery immediately while the best advice and situation can be found. Wei and his mom are taking the train back to Nanning  presently. The most skilled surgeon in this area at Children's Hospital was out of town for two weeks. A skilled American surgeon had just left to go back to the US.  
Advisors and doctors have suggested possible  treatments and hospitals, even in the USA. They seem to think his case is very rare and perhaps dangerous or hard to do surgery on, so we need the most skilled doctors to be on his case.
Some recommend intervention early or talk of scar tissue, while others say the cyst is large because of the biopsies leaking blood into the cyst.  
Sclerotherapy, "a procedure used to treat blood vessels or blood vessel malformations (vascular malformations) and also those of the lymphatic system" has been suggested by one American doctor as something to considerInjecting the unwanted veins with a sclerosing solution causes the target vein to immediately shrink, and then dissolve over a period of weeks as the body naturally absorbs the treated vein.
We hope to share copies of the actual MRI, letting other doctors review them. Medical records in China are kept by the patients not by doctors. Some want to send him to Shanghai for a second evaluation and treatment by doctors who specialize in this problem and others like it. 

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Latest News about Wei Senbao

Blessing Hands

Latest News about Wei Senbao
Beijing Children's Hospital Admits Him

Wei and his mother in the Nanning Hospital
Beijing, August 18, 2010 - Wei Senbao and his mother arrived in Beijing yesterday and were met at the train by representatives of the Chinese American doctor who has donated toward his care. There was a last minute panic concerning a $4,478 deposit that the hospital needed before they would admit him.  We have raised only $3,000 for his care so far, so Mandy and I didn't know where the extra money would come from. Fortunately the Blessing Hands account had enough money in it to cover the extra $1,478 needed for his acceptance into the hospital, but we will have to replace that money since it was budgeted for other needs.
Laura White and I have pledged to raise that much to replace the deposit borowed from other projects, and we hope that you will help us. Laura has been working really hard to place Wei Senbao's need in the Lexington  paper and on TV, but we need your help to spread the news about Wei farther afield. Laura says Wei Senbao is constantly on her mind.
I hope some of you will make a personal webpage through First Giving which can be used as a viral fund raising method. Any of you computer geeks can make such a page and send it out to your friends who can pass it on to their friends.   Blessing Hands is registered with them as a qualified charity. Just go to this website dedicated to Blessing Hands and get started. You can add personal ideas and photos as you like. Photos of Senbao that you can download are at this URL.  You can get ideas from our Blessing Hands regular website.
Mandy Ma with Wei and His Mother
Mandy Ma, who is escorting a tour to Beijing which allowed Wei Senbao and his mother to join the group, will be checking on him at night when she isn't working. She offered to guide them for free if they would pay only her food, travel and lodging. That way her ticket to Beijing was paid, and she could help Wei and his mother get there too. She will have to leave with the tour group, however, so we hope Wei and his mother will find assistance from Beijing friends. Mandy unselfishly loaned her own money for his care in Nanning, so I was glad to be able to pay her back.
 You can see the First Giving Page I created at this link.
Donate $25 here with PayPal.
Give on our website at our special Wei Senbao page and see a video of his village's school.

Carol needs a University Scholarship

Carol Feng
Feng Xi comes from a small village and struggled to get her high school education. She wants to be a Chinese teacher and return to teach in her small village. She wants the children there to see the value of education, especially the education of girls. Please give her help by contributing toward a $500 scholarship for her. She has been accepted unconditionally to the college of her choice, Liverpool University. Her scholarship essay is below.
You can see her scholarship video at this youtube link.
       My name is Feng Xi, and my English name is Carol. I have been helped by Blessing Hands for three years. Thanks for your help these years; I can complete my senior courses, so I show my deep thankfulness to you.
       I live in a remote village in Fang Chenggang. My parents are farmers and earn only about 600 yuan a month ($89 US) . Worse still, they often get ill, so they can't do heavy work. My brother will study in middle school, and I will go to college. Years ago, our family owed a 50 thousand yuan debt($7,462 US) and it still has not been paid off. My father had two brothers, but they died years ago, and their wives and children still need our help. So my father has to support three families. Last year my grandma died, and my father had to borrow more money for her funeral. So my family cannot afford my college.
       Because of their poor life and the poor teaching conditions, the children of our village hardly went to school; I am one of the few lucky students. I dreamed of studying in college when I was a child. I desire to see a bigger world. Only in this way can I save my poor family, and I can give hope to the other children in our village and let them be confident in studying. I hope one day not only me but also they can get out of the mountains and save their poor lives. But this is only my dream. My parents cannot support my study anymore, because the cost of college is so high.
       So I am applying for Blessing Hands. I have been admitted by a collage, I hope I can get your help in my first year. I am eager for your help. I believe love can be passed .One day, if I can; I will do my best to help another just like you do.

  Feng Xi

Blessing Hands is a public charity in good standing with the IRS and the State of Kentucky. Gifts to our students will qualify for a US tax deduction.
Please give for Carol's Scholarship on this page where you can choose to give $250 or a $500 donation.  Or you can contact us about other donation amounts or just send a check for the amount you desire to give to Blessing Hands, 106 Timber Lane, Morehead, KY 40351.
A education is a terrible thing to waste.
# # #
 Betty Cutts for Blessing Hands

Wei Senbao is Getting Help

Subject: Fantastic Photos from Yangshuo and Good News about Wei

Blessing Hands 
Blessing Hands
Wei Senbao is Getting Help

Laura White Raises $1000 for Wei's Medical Care
See a movie about Wei Senbao's  village  and donate on our website at this link.  

Wei and his mother with Mandy
Wei with his mother
Laura White, our intern for the summer, has really taken Wei Senbao's case to heart. She has featured him on her Facebook page and written an article about him for our local paper. An excerpt is below, but you can read the whole article with a picture at this link.
"We saw him standing in the back with his mother, he was a three-year-old little boy, and he had what looked like a goiter on the side of his face. It was just two fists of tumors, it was huge," White said. "The translators asked his Mom for us what was wrong with him, and she said he was born that way. His father had left when the little boy's mom was pregnant, so he's not in the picture. In Chinese culture, when you get married the wife moves in with the husband's family and leaves her family. Now the dad's gone, but she has to stay with his family, so she has nothing and no income there. A doctor had never looked at the little boy except when he was born, and he said that it was cancer."
 "When we were hiking to that village, it was really hot, and I felt like I was in the worst mood because it was so hot, and it wasn't an easy hike," she said.  "I don't know why, but my patience ran really thin that day, and then I saw this little boy, and it was like something clicked, and it was like, this is why you're here. You needed to see him. I felt like it was God's way of saying this is why I brought you here." According to White, she felt like she needed to help Wei or he wasn't going to make it.

Laura White in Yangshuo
A Chinese American doctor has given another $2,000 US and put Mandy Ma in touch with doctors at Beijing's Children's Hospital, one of the two hospitals in China equipped to handle a rare case like Wei's. Mandy has arranged to take him and his Mom to Beijing on the train on the 17th of August. His miracle is in the making but more money will be needed for his treatment.
You can give on our Wei Senbao website.
Student Pictures from the Photo Workshop

Our Fuse the Muse Photo Workshop was a great success. About 80 Blessing Hands student came to our workshop over two days, and about 30 volunteers were involved with helping them. None of us will ever forget it. 
My Pick of the Photos are featured on this site

For a 3 minute Youtube video giving an overview of the workshop event click here
Eighty of our students had a great time taking photos at the Yangshuo Fuse the Muse Photo Workshop. We have gotten most of the photos labeled and put online. David Hsieh, who taught our Photo Workshop, has put all the raw pictures on Flickr at this link.  There is a slide show of my best picks of the photos this link.
Bicycles for two made it easy for volunteers to help students.
We had 12 Blessing Hands volunteers and 22 volunteers from Guangxi Normal University, thanks to the support of Malan Cai and Cindy Mai, who teach English there. David Hsieh, who speaks Chinese, connected with the kids  wonderfully making a great teacher. After a one hour instruction, the kids and their volunteers went out on bicycles built or two to photograph Yangshuo.
On September 11th, Laura White will present a program about the photo workshop at the Rowan County art Center in Morehead, KY. Johnna Brynn Bockover is designing a photo book to sell, and we will have a photo art show in January 2011, also at the art center. We will feature portraits of the students along 
Marya Zhang's Portrait 
with their own photos.
With the help of Starshooter Charity, Sister Cities of Morehead, KY, a Fuse the Muse grant from the Rowan County Arts Center, and the Yangshuo Educational Department, we were able to give each student photos and many exceptional memories. 

Su Yufang (R) and Huang Pingzhi
To see candid shots of Yangshuo by David Hsieh go to this link . I warn you that he took a lot of photos.
College Scholarships Opportunities

      Every fall we find sponsors for our graduating seniors who need scholarships to college by featuring them in our newsletters and online at Youtube.com.  Without your sponsorship they cannot go to college.  You can see all 15 of them who applied this year at this website.  Please support Edith by reading her essay.
Scholarship Essay
by  Huang Jiehui  (Edith)                                                
See her video at this link.

My name is Huang Jiehui, a senior 3 student in No. 1 Middle School in Guangxi, Qinzhou, China. I was born in 1991 and live in the dormitory of the silk factory, which is in the south of Qinzhou. My mother used to work there, but it closed many years ago, and my mother was laid off
  First, thank you ever so much for all you have given me. I joined Blessing Hands two years ago. Blessing Hands not only has helped me with aid but also let me feel your love.

      I intend to major in economics in the university. I like the major very much. I think it can make people smart and follow the steps of society. However, my family cannot support the expensive expenses, because my family is poor.

     My Father is weak. Therefore, he has stayed for many years at home. My mother and elder brother support the family. Because our economic condition was bad, my brother left school to earn money when he was a senior one student.  Their work is always unstable, because their school level is not high. Their income can only manage daily life, so I realized the importance of learning. There are six people in my family. There are my Dad and Mom, my brother and sister-in-law, my infant nephew and me.  With the birth of my nephew our income has been used up.

    Now I am trying to learn more knowledge in an attempt to change the present situation of my family. But I am faced with a very major difficulty. Therefore I am applying for the scholarship now. I hope to get your help. My college entrance examination score is 496, and I have been admitted to Guangxi University of Nationalities.

     Thanks again for the help you gave me. Whether or not I get the scholarship, I will remember the help you gave me and remember your love for me. I will try my best to help others. I believe that through my efforts I can make my life and my family's life better.

 Huang Jiehui
Give a$510 scholarship to Huang Jiehui and help a whole family. Donate

To give half of a scholarship go to this link. 
Your donation is tax deductable through Blessing Hands.
Betty Cutts
Blessing Hands
219 232 8887
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