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Youth Volunteer Team Demonstrates Love in Preferential Areas of Education

Youth Volunteer Team Demonstrates Love in Preferential Areas of Education

As the summer is approaching, how are you going to plan your summer break? Get a summer job, travel abroad, attend workshops, or stay at home and rest? If you haven't planned your summer yet, why don't you consider joining the Volunteer Team?

In order to encourage college students to contribute their efforts to the society, Ministry of Education and National Youth Commission initiated a program to subsidize summer camps for elementary and junior school students located in preferential areas of education organized by student clubs of colleges and universities as well as civil organizations. The purpose of this program is to encourage students to apply the idea of learning through volunteering in camps so they will cultivate a positive, active, and loving attitude toward life.

Services include volunteer education and volunteer reading. Camps are designed for recreation and sports, gender equality, human rights, life education, community services, cultural, historical investigation and visits, environmental protection, bioenvironmental conservation, hygiene and health, English instruction and information counseling etc.

Volunteer reading services apply to activities which promote reading, picture books teaching, 3D storybook teaching, and improving the reading environment of students.

Cardinal Tien Cultural Foundation Has Served in Tribes for 43 Years

Cardinal Tien Cultural Foundation has served in tribes for forty-three consecutive years now. The foundation originally served in Wufong Township, Hsin Chu County, and later expanded its services to seven tribes in Jiashih Township. This year, volunteers of the foundation will serve in tribes for three weeks starting from July 19th to August 8th.

The foundation recruits approximately forty college students as volunteers every February and March. Students are divided into small groups such as community culture, education, public relations, and care. Training lessons are also provided, including the history of organizations and volunteer services offered this year. Reading sessions are also included in the education group. In addition, the foundation provides mandatory lessons for all volunteers to familiarize themselves with the meaning of 'serving'.

Since the foundation has served in tribes for more than three decades, volunteers share strong relationships with people in the tribes. In addition to assisting children with their homework, volunteers also tell them stories. Volunteers also help the aboriginals on the farm.

Furthermore, by creating "family trees" and "maps of tribes", volunteers assist children in getting to know their life and family stories so that families in the tribes will have records of their children's growth, and that volunteers can have a better understanding of the tribes.

At night, volunteers visit the families to better understand how the aboriginal children live. Families in need will be transferred to the Care Program for greater assistance in the future.

Once the volunteers learn the needs of the locals, they will do their best to offer their help. Take an elderly woman in Shih Lei Tribe for example: her recycling work made the surroundings fairly dirty. Therefore, volunteers designed recycling bins, created recycling procedures and negotiated with people in the tribe to empty a piece of land for placing recycling bins. The living environment of the tribe is much cleaner now, and the locals learned to recycle.

The Tianpu Tribe, on the other hand, has no reading environment outside of school. Therefore, volunteers created a reading corner in the church, where facilities were established, and books are provided. Volunteers also read with the children to help them cultivate reading habits.

Five years ago, Zhong You-qi was a volunteer; she is now a camp counselor. Zhong says she had the opportunity to become a volunteer of the foundation back then, and after she started serving, she became more familiar with the tribes. The friendship that she has gained is precious.

Volunteering is not only about providing services, but also a way of learning to think and solve problems. Volunteers can also grow themselves through serving others. Zhong goes on to say, "It is good to volunteer. I hope one day they will feel the same way."

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