Spreading Christmas Joy with MCF
Raising globally competent and compassionate leaders with a servant’s heart is reflected in our daily activities at Yew Chung International School of Beijing, however, around this time of the year – Christmas, this value is embraced even more through Character Formation activities such as the Christmas Wish Tree Project, which is organised by the school’s Parent Organisation (PO).
“Christmas Wish Tree Project has been an annual PO Charity event for many years. Our intention is to give love and hope to children in need as a community during the special season of Christmas.” asserted PO President, Jenny Chang.
On Monday, December 9th the PO with the support of our academic team was able to do just that when we received a visit from the Migrant Children’s Foundation. This year’s decision to invite MCF was based upon the fact that some children are not fortunate enough to receive gifts around this time of the year, as an expression of love from their parents. Migrant Children's Foundation (MCF) is a non-profit organization that works with migrant communities in Beijing. The organization is dedicated to enriching and expanding the educational opportunities available for disadvantaged children living in Beijing, and is staffed by a team of long-term volunteers.
The PO worked in collaboration with students who donated gifts on Santa Collection Day and the academic team which was glad to organize activities for our guests on the day of the visit. The activities kicked off with "Get to Know Each Other" game which was a fantastic ice-breaker for both YCIS Beijing students and their MCF counterparts. This was followed by all students “splitting into groups and taking MCF learners on a tour of our school campus.” added Jenny.
All students were happy to interact with each other and we are incredibly proud because “Our kids showed great hospitality and enthusiastically entertained our guests. They made friends quickly and tried to help their new friends when they experienced problems during activities”
This sentiment was reiterated by Pastoral Care Coordinator, Casey Fanning who said “We strongly encourage our students to cross cultural borders that are not just based on nationality, but also socio-economic and circumstantial.”
”Just as we hope to be a blessing to others, we hope to learn and grow from the stories shared by our new-found friends that come from a different background.” he added.
Although gifts are an obvious and conspicuous way to express love around this time of the year, Mr. Fanning encourages students to explore other ways of doing this. “Sacrificing time playing or gaming and spending quality time with our families. Or giving of our time helping and assisting family members, neighbors or even strangers.” he encouraged our students.
After an activity filled day in our Year 5 and Year 6 Learning Community there was one last surprise which is everybody’s favourite activity during Christmas – receiving gifts from Santa Claus! Every student from the foundation walked away with a present. All gifts were received with great excitement and appreciation that will hopefully make this their best Christmas.
For Casey, he hopes valuable lessons students learned from this activity is what they continuously learn in the classroom; empathy and generosity.
The generosity theme will continue at the Christmas Bazaar as the PO hosts another event aimed at collecting funds for a good cause!