Heart Has a Thousand Knots
Yesterday night there was a bit of light rain. When we woke up, the air was very refreshing. The campers were quite excited, and by 7:30 everyone was done getting washed up and ready. An early start!
Last night we played the “heart has a thousand knots” game. We wanted to play it again today, but this time we increased the challenge to 27 people. This time everyone came to play regardless of age, and the game was actually quite challenging! Many of the younger campers wanted to give up. Although they had little confidence, the seemingly impossible became possible through collaboration, remaining calm, and countless rounds of trial and error.
Everyone was happy about our success, and after the game was over we all gathered to talk about our feelings. We all agreed on the following lessons: perseverance leads to success, efforts yield great results, and there is strength in teamwork. Let’s give the campers a thumbs up and some applause!
After breakfast, everyone prepared for our journey to the Gansu Museum, and our driver arrived just on time! The campers all orderly piled onto the bus. Everyone was in high spirits, and we began to sing the camp song.
We of course took obligatory group shots in front of the museum. After two days, the campers are all comfortable with the camera, and quickly strike up poses.
Thanks to the arrangements made by Teacher Guan, the museum volunteer Mr. Xu guided us around. The children were intensely curious about all this new information, and listened intently to Mr. Xu’s explanations.
Women and Children's Hospital
In the afternoon we went to the Women and Children’s Hospital. The hospital carefully prepared many activities for the campers, and each group of two campers was assigned a nurse to accompany them. Their enthusiasm helped the campers put down their worries and open up their hearts.
In our group of campers this year, 13 have undergone heart surgery with support from Little Red Scarf. After surgery, the children could go to school and play with kids their own age… they have now left their marks in the schoolyards and on the village roads.
Even though the surgeries were completed a few years ago, the hospital arranged follow-up heart examinations for the the children and carefully assessed the results. The examinations were done by splitting the campers up into groups.
Because the hospital thought that the groups waiting for the exams would be bored, they arranged a piano performance. A beautiful doctor painted numerous stories for the children through her piano playing.
Cindy from Canada also played, garnering admiration and applause from the audience. Cindy knows that the campers usually don’t have access to pianos, and were very unlikely to ever come this close to a piano again. She took the initiative to invite the campers up on stage to play the piano together, and taught them “do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-do.” Even though the kids only played 7 easy notes, their faces were filled with joy and excitement.
After that the publicity chief gave us a tour of the hospital and its walls of photography. This whole journey could be called an art tour! He stimulated the minds of our campers, trying to help them appreciate the beauty of the photographs and oil paintings and find the deeper meanings behind the paintings. The beauty of life is everywhere, and you need to use your heart to feel it. You experience different kinds of beauty from different angles and perspectives.
He also arranged for us to visit the infant and pediatric intensive care units. Our campers sighed when they saw all the sick children. They were amazed by the greatness of medicine and the miracle of life. Our tour guide told the children to make the most of life, and always help others. "It is important to have a thankful heart," he said.
The next activity was a drawing activity with the theme “When I Met Myself.” Everyone's eyes really lit up for this one. Whether he meant to or not, our guide helped the children get to know themselves, stimulated their imaginations, and challenged their long-held beliefs. Because of this man’s guidance, the event was very successful.
The campers used their pens to draw who they envisioned themselves to be and their emotions at the time. Their beautiful works of art replaced the artwork that were already hanging on the walls, and it attracted many observers. Lots of people took photographs of their paintings. We have such high praise for our kids!
We really appreciate the hospital’s careful planning. When the camp staff saw the children’s creations, we gave them all a thumbs up. They really are the best!
Next was a seminar called “Understand Your Heart” that helped the campers understand congenital heart disease and the structure of their heart. The hospital let the children use stethoscopes to hear their own strong heartbeats, to give them faith that they will lead long happy lives.
Happy times always tend to fly by. The activities arranged by the hospital finished up, and the campers performed “The most beautiful light” for the hospital staff. They used their voices to express their appreciation for the staff!
At night the children all boarded the bus back to camp. We hope that this trip to the museum and hospital left them with good memories that will last them a lifetime.
Original article written by LRS staff, translated by Emma Cockerell, edited by Carolyn D.
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