Written by Dolphin Liu, China Programs Director
In July, 2010, I joined the CWEF team and began my journey into a career in charity. During these five years I observed local needs, as well as bridge building & sustainable impact through CWEF programs. However, I was always confused about CWEF’s core principle of “transformation” in our programs. Did our recipients really experience transformation or do we just idealize that they will have a transformation through our program? Finally, I found out the answer: transformation takes time and we need to be patient. Fortunately, after 5 years of waiting, I personally saw the transformation of CWEF program participants and my confusion on this point leaves no trace in my mind.
From December 13th-16th, 2014, 6 university volunteers, who were previously CWEF high school recipients, held a service activity in Sibao Primary school. They completed home visits for 33 left-behind kids, they provided 1 day of English, PE & Music lessons to local students. They also held a Christmas party for local students and teachers. As for me, I only needed to be a photographer & instructor — not an organizer this time, which has never happened before.
Watching the university volunteers, I was reminded that I did home visits for 3 of them five years ago. I still remember how nervous and shy they were when I first met them. But this time, they are the ones to do the home visits with the left-behind children. They are the ones who provided their love, care and comfort to others. Now, those shy girls have become confident and mature volunteers, who are also good at talking with local people. Just like what we did. Five years ago when I first met these young women, I did not imagine this would happen.
In these 5 years, I facilitated our program participants to attend CWEF activities, go to university and become a volunteer. I am glad I stayed in CWEF for five years, so that I have the chance to see the transformation so clearly today. I believe education & care will bring others the power to change & grow, but it really takes time. We should be patient and have long term vision. It’s worth the wait.
For more details about this trip, please watch the video about the Grow Up Together program.