Future Plans for Baibi Village

In the meeting with Dr.L on July 29th, we covered a couple of things including future supports for the children in Baibi and some crazier ideas such as the potential business chain we can help establish in Baibi. However, for next year, we have some more practical plans in mind, and I hereby write these down to let people know more about our thinkings.

  • Fundraising:

Fundraising is fairly crucial in the whole process of this project, for the kids in Baibi do need money to pay for their education and life expense. Given that some families are really impoverished, they not only need support with the tuition for the children, but also, sometimes, need support with their  life expense. Annie Yu, the founder of BMF and the initial explorer of the village, has been funding and supporting May and Mia for the past few years. However, I’m eager to make a change because I want to rally more students around me to know more about and do to help the kids in the village. This year, Edie Gao from Dulwich Suzhou, raised enough money to help Mia and May with their high school tuition by holding a inter-school dance competition. Although the fund is limited and holding the competition is tough, we are more than happy to see the outcome and desire to continue doing this based on our previous experience. By various means of fundraising in our own schools, we can definitely  gather a certain amount of money for the kids. However, we are also looking for potential sponsors who are willing to fund the kids to support them with their life and education since the strength of the society can be enormous.

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  • Trip

The same as last year, a trip to Baibi the next summer vacation will be planned out, and the recruiting is always ongoing. I’m constantly looking for suitable volunteers for this project. From passionate students to experienced educators, anyone who’s genuine to help is welcomed to the team. We will probably be living in the house of the local villagers’ as we did this year, which reduces the cost and financially benefits the village. Also, we will continue to strengthen the connection with the children and carry out the teaching programs as we have always done.

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  • Needs

According to Annie, the elementary school kids are in great lack of study materials. Most of them have no homework to do in summer, which results in their poor academic results compared to other schools in that area. Annie has planned to buy some basic materials for the primary school kids form a local book store in Leishan, a more developed town 1.5 hours of driving from Baibi, where many kids in Baibi go for high school education. We are hoping that this situation can get better by our efforts.

Also, the primary school in Baibi lacks qualified teacher since the wage is low and the condition is difficult. We are still trying to come up with effective ideas towards this problem.

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  • Business Chain

In our last meeting, Dr.L, Annie Yu, and I discussed about the possibility of help the kids in Baibi establish a business chain to promote their life conditions. Through selling the local traditional handicrafts to big cities like Shanghai, New York or Chicago, we can together help them make enough money to solve some of the problems they are faced with. However, it’s so massive a network we have to build that we are only taking the very first step on this: trying to find local contacts and reliable people who are willing to help in different cities around the world.

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The kids in Baibi are facing with a series of problems with their life, education and future. They need mentorship, life guidance, and financial supports. It seems the work ahead of us is overwhelming, but I’m enthusiastic as always and gratified to see that we have already gone this far. With all the plans awaiting to be carried out, LET’S DO THIS TOGETHER?!

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2014 Guizhou Project

Eva s grading the paper turned in by the kids

Eva s grading the paper turned in by the kids

This July we revisited the village in Guizhou and met some of the kids we met last year. Also we got to see some new faces in our classrooms and were more than happy to take them in.

At first we thought that they might find english lessons boring , or that they might reject what we’d prepared for them,like the english drama. However, it turned out that the kids in Baibi are more eager to learn english than we thought. They even managed to perform the drama “Cinderalla” on the evening party.

Two kids studying the globe

Two kids studying the globe

Holding the same nature as the other kids in the world, they are curious. Two of the boys sticked around the globe we brought to them for half an hour. Girls spent hours and hours painting on the rock. And many were just so passionate about singing the english pop songs we taught them and sway as the music goes on.

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Kids’ work!

 

Xiao Wei doing drama rehearsal in front of the camera.

Xiao Wei doing drama rehearsal in front of the camera.

At first, we had to lead them through every single word in the drama script to make sure they pronounce it in the right way. Later they got adept at this and even added some excellent moves to the play. Xiao Wei is one of the most diligent and talented.

 

 

Goodbye Guizhou (for now)!

15 Days after our arrival in Guizhou, our IWA team is now officially heading back to Shanghai.

We have had a great time with the girls at Baibi village in the past two weeks, learning English, making  videos, organizing a village party and so much more!  The “goodbye”s were sad, but I’m sure that the IWA team would be returning to Baibi in the near future.

Of course, there has been more to the Guizhou trip than fun and games. Before leaving Baibi, we have sucessfully initiated the first step of our long term support plan for the older girls we are working with. Right now, we have installed, in the girls’ homes, second-hand computers collected by IWA clubs in Shanghai. The girls are not yet connected to the internet, but we have left the girls with English-learning CDs and are encouraging them to practice typing and basic computer skills on these computers. In the coming months, we will be working on connecting these girls to the internet in order to gain access to more educational resources. We are also considering the possibility of purchasing new computers with local warrenty to ensure stable machine performance and maximum technical support.