A Brave Little Girl from North China – By Phoenix

During the summer vacation, I had a wonderful time catching up with the different families of  Captivating’s Heilongjiang Project.   I visited about 20 students and their families.  The children were happy to be back home from school, to live with their parents and to eat mom’s home-cooked food.  It’s a perfect time to visit the whole family, to chat with them to find out about their current situation and to experience their happiness and sadness.

Life is not easy for everyone especially for those families who live under difficult conditions.  Today I would like to introduce a brave little girl named Meng Qing Yuan who comes from a family of three.  Qing Yuan was born on 3rd Dec 2000 and was diagnosed with kidney disease when she was 5.  Since then she has been severely ill.  Her treatment has resulted in big debts to Qing Yuan’s parents.  She needs to wear glasses as she is far-sighted, she is on Chinese medication and can only eat certain foods.  Despite this difficulty, Qing Yuan is so positive, her happy smile never leaving her face.  Even when her parents received the devastating news of her illness from the doctor, she kept smiling for them.  You won’t have a hint of her illness if you are unaware of her situation.  Qing Yuan says when she grows up, she wants to be a doctor to help patients who suffer from severe illnesses.

Qing Yuan sometimes must stay at home because of her sickness.  Her mother says that Qing Yuan is eager to go back to school and she reads her school books all day.  The Chinese medicine she is on tastes really bitter and is not easy for Qing Yuan to swallow.  However, when her mother coaxes her by saying “If you drink this medicine, it will get you well soon and then you can go back to school,” Qing Yuan very quickly complies at the thought of school!

Qing Yuan likes music lessons very much and enjoys listening to the beats and rhythms of a song.  She sings well but she is too shy to sing for an audience and especially when I was visiting.  At home, Qing Yuan helps with housework and tries to relieve her mom’s household burden.  When she talks about her mom, her eyes tear up because she knows her mom is exhausted and does a lot for her.

Qing Yuan’s father cannot get a stable job as he is suffering from rheumatism.  He can only work when he is well and when the rheumatism is not acting up.  Qing Yuan’s mother suffers from severe depression mainly due to concerns about Qing Yuan’s health.   However, no matter how hard life is for these parents, they will make every effort to give their daughter a better life.

This little girl impressed and inspired me a lot.  I hope miracles will happen to this tough little girl.  She is so full of desire and tries her best to triumph over illness.

Love makes people’s hearts warm and with love, everything is possible!

(Pictured Left: Qing Yuan; Right Top, Qing Yuan’s Family; Right Bottom, Where Qing Yuan lives).


International Women's Day 2017

"One girl can make a difference - but together we can change our world"


Life as a Field Staff - an article by Phoenix

Hi, my name is Hou Fengjiao, but everyone at Captivating calls me Phoenix. I work as a member of the field staff of the...


NORTHERN CHINA PROJECT 200 – Now into year 4.

150 children are being supported through school in this project located just below Russia.  Freezing cold conditions make for scarce work with many families only having 4 months of the year to earn...


Growing up in Heilongjiang

“I am doing the home visit of two students...


Heilongjiang Project 200 – mushrooms anyone

Project 200 is about bringing hope to the poorest children we can find in this Northern China community.  We are partnered with government schools to support these kids so they can remain in school and progress through their education.  This...


Captivating MUSHROOMS – an update on our Pilot program

We are part way through our Captivating Mushroom program being piloted just below Russia in Heilongjiang Province. Several of our poorest-of-the-poor families in our Heilongjiang Project 200 initiative are testing to see whether this is a sustainable income generating solution for them.  Thanks to the volunteer expertise of one of the local retired school-masters, initial results are positive.  The program concludes...