This week Wednesday is Children's Day, a holiday that is widely and thoroughly celebrated here in China. Students will get the day off from class. Parents will buy them candy or take them to KFC. Kids might also compete in some special "performances" (photo below).
This past Sunday, I joined a pre-Children's Day party at the welfare center in Hengyang. Some student friends went with me (and actually helped motivate me to go too). Some of our other friends work at the center, so we got to cheer them on and see them at work. We also got to take some of the weaker and more disabled children from the government side of the center out to enjoy the performance.
These students asked why the kids we took outside were so sick and hungry looking. :( I have to bite my tongue in these situations as my natural response is usually an incredibly negative one. Instead, I try to explain the situation in a more indirect way. In fact, these kids are hungry. They only get 2 meals a day and in each meal, they get about half a bowl of some cooked rice mixed with vegetables. It's not enough, so the kids get really hungry, skinny, and crazy for food. Which is why, during the performance, the boys we took outside were only halfway interested in the performance and halfway interested in eating the oatmeal cookies we were feeding them.
All in all, it was a wonderful morning. These students did an excellent job with the kids, sitting with them and interacting with them, letting them feel human touch and kindness. They really were the Father's hands and feet on that morning, and I hope their passion for these children won't be quickly forgotten.