The combination of fun and service that was the summer Friendship Camp in Yangshuo was outstanding. The scene that I remember the most was the American and Chinese campers dancing for the elderly at an old folks home. The government sent trolleys to pick us up to visit with seniors. The kids sang with them, showed them the dances they had learned and helped them do art.
Dancing for Elderly
We had a great group of twenty-six American teachers and Chinese translators and counselors. There were 12 US campers and about 36 Blessing Hands kids. We owe a big thank you to the Yangshuo Education Department, Yangshuo County Government, Blessing Hands sponsors, and Sister Cities of Morehead for supporting the camp. American kids learned calligraphy and Tai ji while Chinese kids enjoyed American games and crafts.
College Scholarship Interviews: Huang Juanxia
Each summer trip, we interview Blessing Hands students who want to go to college. We are featuring Huang Juanxia as an outstanding student. You can read her own words below.
Huang Juanxia Needs a Scholarship to College to Study International Economics
I am about to enter Guangxi College of Finance and Economics but my family can't afford the tuition. I wonder if you can help me. My family has three children who need school expenses. I am from a poor country village, so I know I must study hard to go to college. Going to college is the best way for someone like me who comes from a poor family to change my life, my family's life, and make others have a happy life. My older brother attends the third grade at college and my little brother attends the fifth grade of primary school.
When I was 10, my father died of cancer in 2004. My dad treated his cancer for many years before he died, so we are in big debt for his medical treatment. We live in the countryside and are a poor family. All income is just from my mother's farm work. These years my mother is suffering from lumbar herniation due to fatigue.
So I hope you can help me get my college degree. I will study hard and do some things to help others in my free time.
Blessing Hands' purpose is "To give our love to others", so I will study hard, trying my best to help people who are in trouble by paying back society and making the world full of love. Your love makes the world bright and warms my heart. Thank you for your kindness and love that lets me grow healthy. If people need something, I will spare no effort to help them. I will take the love you give me and around me to make people also be full of love. I will return love to society and put our love everywhere! With your help, I will make my dream come true.
Thank you very much,
Our college students need at least $600 to give them a good start their first year of college, and $650 would be even better. This covers most their tuition for a year. We will give them the whole amount that you give and smaller gifts are welcomed too. Several of your friends might want to go together to sponsor a student.
After the camp we continued on to Du'an County to give five water purifiers to the primary schools there and visit schools we have supported before. Kasey Towles and her family had collected toys and gifts for primary kids in Longfu County. Kasey had a great time giving out gifts as she always does.
Rubberneckin' T-shirtshad given us more than 200 shirts for our kids at both the camp and our other programs. We had the pleasure of giving shirts along with other toys and school supplies to the primary kids at two schools in Longfu Township.
Rubberneckin T-shirts for all the kids at Ling Wang Primary
The Religious Affairs Director, Huang Xiaoyu, helped give gifts.
Village Health Assistants
We got to see health assistants from last year who are putting their knowledge to work to help their villages.
There are also 16 primary single-parent kids there that we sponsor for school supplies and extras needs above tuition. $30 a semester makes a big difference to them. You can give to these kids at this link.
Our one disappointment was the growth in the swelling of the neck of
Wei Senbao's Swelling is Worse.
Wei Senbao. Two years ago we had Wei diagnosed in a Beijing hospital with a congenital malformation of the lymphatic gland in his neck. At that time the doctors wanted to wait until he was older to operate. This time I was alarmed to see that the lymphatic fluid is gathering more and his swelling has increased. We are told it is not life threatening, but it still needs correcting.
His Swelling is Larger.
We assured his mother that we had not forgotten about Senbao and money ($3,134) was still set aside for his operation. It is not enough money, however. We need to raise much more to have him treated in China in a first rate hospital in Shanghai or Beijing. If you would like to help with his medical care or know of doctors willing to give appropriate medical care to him, please contact us.
Scholarship Dinners in Four Cities
My favorite part of our summer trips are the scholarship suppers we have in various cities in Guangxi. I get to see our past and present college students and take movies of them to send to their sponsors.
They give volunteer reports of how they have been blessing hands to others, passing on the love they have received. I am so proud of them and their growing ability to speak up for others and themselves. Some are teachers themselves now.
We also cooperated with the Yangshuo County Government to offer HIV training for their doctors. Dr. Siying Wang volunteered to teach that class and also taught a daily health class at the camp. His daughter was also a volunteer at our camp.
Counselors and Translators Celebrate The End of Camp
Much More News
We are planning a new program in Yunnan and have much to report on our Buyi minority and water purification work, but that will have to wait for another newsletter.
I am a mother and housewife that loves China and children. The two interests
have come together in serving the children of China who need help with
educational needs. I started as a teacher in an English summer camp and got to
know the teachers first. When I toured their schools and met their precious
students, I could see many needs and decided to try to help. I first started a
fund to assist children with tuition, but it has expanded into a 501(c)(3)public
charity granting money for textbooks and school supplies for primary school and
lower middle school students and tuition for older students.