Teacher Feng Yanqing Finds Healing in Volunteering

Teacher Feng Yangqing is one of the volunteers in our Support a Remote Volunteer Teacher Program in China. When she first came to volunteer, her main goal was to gather teaching experience, fulfill her dream of supporting education in the country, and bring healing to the children. But as the weeks went by, she realized that she was the one being healed:

“At the school, the veteran teacher Meng told me, “You will find it amazing here after staying for a while.” At that time, I was skeptical, but as the days unfolded, my heart was truly melted by the children here.

One Friday, there was a power outage at the school, and the classes ended in the morning. The day happened to be sunny, so I decided to take a walk. Not far from the school, there was a mountain ditch that I particularly liked. There was a stream in the ditch, and on the other side of the stream, there was a large grassy slope where villagers liked to graze sheep. It looked beautiful from a distance, so I always wanted to go there and take a look.

Taking advantage of the early finish that day, I walked alone towards that place. On the way, I met Wei, a fifth-grader. I decided to invite him to accompany me because I was afraid of going far alone and encountering danger, and he readily agreed. Wei was incredibly agile. He moved around like a monkey, climbing cliffs and jumping into the soil below the path, looking at birds or picking fruits. After some trekking, we finally reached the stream in the mountain ditch. It was the time of the sunset, and the golden glow of the sun spread beautifully on the rippling water of the stream.

teacher with her students on the mountains

Teacher Feng with her students

I always love to climb high places when I see them. While climbing up with Wei and taking pictures, I felt a strong connection. Of course, I couldn’t outrun Wei. He kept moving ahead like a monkey, sometimes looking down to pick some wildflowers, then weaving them into a basket. When I was halfway up, I sat down to rest. At that moment, he did something very touching. He walked over, put the woven flower basket on my head, but just as I was touched, he immediately threw the basket away, saying, “Oh, I made it too small, didn’t consider your big head.” I was moved and wanted to laugh at the same time.

Later, we climbed to the high point of the grassy slope I had wanted to visit. However, when I was about to leave, Wei continued sitting about a hundred meters away. When I walked closer, I discovered that he was reweaving another flower basket. I was extremely happy because I knew that basket was probably meant for me.

I sat there waiting for him for a long time, occasionally looking back to see if he was coming. Sometimes I found him still inserting wildflowers into the basket. After about twenty minutes, he finally finished weaving. As expected, Wei caught up with me and personally put the basket on my head. At that moment, my proud heart reached its peak.

I heard the veteran teacher Meng say that during the season when the Soma flowers bloom each year, they receive Soma flowers picked by the children every day. When she shared these stories, I thought the children here were fortunate. However, when I truly experienced the pure expressions of the children here, my heart was genuinely melted.

But these children don’t realize how wonderful they are, just like when I told Wei, “This place is beautiful,” and he said, “I think it’s just average.” Then I said, “You may not find it beautiful now, but when you grow up, if you can leave here and spend a few years in the city, you will know how beautiful it is here…”


Thank you to ZURU, GPA Global, ISNS, and supporters from Captivating’s Annual Shenzhen Charity Auction for making this program supporting 30 volunteer teachers possible. 

    

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