Field Trip to Youdao
Foundation supported Kindergarten
One of last years big events was certainly our Golf tournament. Proceeds from this tournament were for the Youdao Foundation, which supports migrant worker’s children to receive a decent education. Last Saturday, April 15th, organized by Terri and Tiziana, a group of Rotarians visited one of the Kindergartens supported to see with their own eyes how our money is being used and also naturally to bring some novelty and entertainment to these kids.
The group took off from the Marriott City Center, with some also joining at the Kindergarten. We were warmly welcomed by the teachers, members of Youdao and naturally the children, who rapidly lost all inhibitions about these strangers visiting. Rotary is sponsoring the education of 5 children. 3 of these were present for the day, but another 19 children and their parents also joined in the fun. Some were from the Kindergarten, some were from neighboring schools for migrant worker’s children. All in all there were children ranging from 2-12 years old. Basically the kindergarten receives no government funding. The schools receive some government funding. Thus also the government ensures some basic staff qualifications and standards. But overall the cost per child per semester for the parents is 3.000 – 6.000 RMB + 1.000RMB lunch money – not small money for migrant workers. The kindergarten caters to 300 children. An amazing feat, considering how small the facilities are. Colored vividly, it was a joyful place to be.
After the introduction, the games started in earnest. We prepared books using a variety of plants, leaves and twigs to glue to the each page, an activity which rapidly broke the ice and soon the in the beginning sometimes shy youngsters enjoyed working with these visitors. Actually the spirits were so high that the Rotarians were relegated to supportive roles: “Hand me the glue”, “Bring me some more leaves”…….
A few outdoor games allowed us to compete – but Rotarians mostly could only offer the larger size, as we were easily outplayed and out-energized.
As always in China, there had to be some food at the end and after three wonderful hours we left, having greatly enjoyed the day but also hopefully having brought excitement to a number of youngsters, giving them many stories to tell to their friends and at home.