On Sunday the 23rd of June, CTC Intern Nyaradzo, Project Coordinator Alex and one of CTC’s founding board members, Mark paid a visit to our long-term charity partner – Lanjing Ling (LJL). LJL is a local Zhuhai charity which supports children with developmental disabilities such as those living with Autism and Down Syndrome through a range of weekly activities and classes.
The first class they attended was the Happy Baking course, in which this week, the children were learning to bake cupcakes. It was wonderful to see the children smiling and having fun with each other while immersing themselves in the activity. The team were especially glad to see that these classes were achieving exactly what had been intended in providing the children with transferrable skills which could potentially be useful when they eventually join the work force. And the fact that the cupcakes were super tasty was a massive bonus!
Let’s Play Together! Basketball
Next our team visited the Let’s Play Together class, which intends to build on the children’s spatial awareness and hand-eye coordination through sports such as tennis, football and basketball whilst encouraging valuable social interaction. On that day, the children were learning to play basketball. The class begun with a dribbling exercise, where the children were instructed to dribble the ball from one end of the court to the other. This was followed by a passing exercise which saw the children paired off and passing back and forth to each other. About halfway through the class, our team members were asked to join some of the older children in a little game on the court, in which the children were able to impress the team with their shooting skills.
Overall our team were extremely pleased with everything they saw at LJL. They were able to witness for themselves the benefit of these classes to the children, particularly as an opportunity for them to strengthen their social and communication skills through interaction with each other and their teachers. Both programs are fully funded by the CTC, a Zhuhai NGO.
“A community of people collectively making a difference for Zhuhai’s children“
What started as a handful of expats looking to make a small difference in the city they call home, has now become a growing name in the local community. At the Come Together Community (CTC), the main objective is to offer assistance to local charities in Zhuhai that support underprivileged children or children with special needs. This is done through providing materials for educative purposes, and funding programmes that develop social and cognitive skills in children with special needs. In addition to this, CTC prides itself on being 100% transparent surrounding funding activities, and seek to gain verifiability and trust from its sponsors. All members of CTC are dedicated to making a change and improve the lives of many families in Zhuhai, and hope to continue this for many years to come.
2018 has been the biggest year yet for CTC. With ever-increasing sponsorship and funding received over the years, CTC have grown and expanded numerous projects whilst continuing to support existing ones.
The Come Together Charity Music Festival is the largest charity festival event in South China, and is the biggest fundraising event of the year for CTC. Each year, CTC hosts this event to bring people together from all cultures and walks in life to celebrate music and raise these funds for charity. Hosted in the LETS Cultural District in Zhuhai on the 17th November, the festival involved live performances, various food and beverage vendors, activities and a kids zone, making it an entertaining and successful event this year.
Many bands rallied from all over Zhuhai, Macau and Hong Kong this year to donate their time and talent to the worthy cause. The headlining acts for this year were The High Rollers from Macau, Dr Eggs and Celtics from Hong Kong, and many more local artists! A new addition to the music festival this year was the GameZone, which showcased activities such as pie throwing, large-scale painting, inflatable bean bags and face painting to keep the kids entertained all day long.
今年，珠海、澳门、香港等地的各个乐队都为这件有意义的事业奉献了自己的时间和才华。今年的主角是来自澳门的The High Rollers，来自香港的Dr Eggs和Celtics，以及更多的本地艺术家! 今年音乐节的一个新项目是儿童游乐区，它展示了各种活动，比如扔馅饼、大型绘画、充气豆袋和脸部彩绘，让孩子们可以享受一整天的乐趣。
Hopes for the 2018 Come Together Charity Music Festival were to surpass the amount of previous years fundraising efforts. An increase of determination and drive to make this possible resulted in 1519 attendees (excluding children), and raised a grand total of RMB 354,291 which is RMB 18,056 more than the highest fundraising year in 2016.
The Growth of Come Together Charity Music Festival
CTC predominately fund 3 local charities that support underprivileged children and families, and children with disabilities. These charities are called Zhuhai Autism Society (ZAS), Charity Promotion Association of Zhuhai (CPAZ), and Lanjing Ling (LJL).
Lanjing Ling (LJL)
Lanjing Ling is an organisation dedicated to helping children with low functioning autism learn and develop skills in a safe and creative environment. CTC recognizes that when a child is diagnosed with autism, it affects the entire family. LJL fund not only education, but also support the parents through classes to better manage their children’s needs at home. CTC is happy to support the LJL parent class, because it gives parents an opportunity to connect with other parents and families in the same situation as their own.
The social interaction classes teach classroom behaviour and etiquette to primary aged children, in which one of the parents said is a great experience for the children. Not only does the learning happen in the classroom, but also on the court through the ‘Let’s Play Together Programme’ and in the kitchen through ‘Happy Baking’, where the children improve their hand eye coordination, collaborative skills and have a great time whilst doing it!
Read more about our visits to LJL projects here:
Zhuhai Autism Society
Zhuhai Autism Society is another charity dedicated to caring for children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, involving a specialised day-care centre for children 5-18 as well as activities and games on the weekend. The classes aim to help the children finish their homework tasks, with extra help in the areas in which they struggle to complete. The activity programme that ZAS runs includes a skating class, games, and arts and crafts.
We sat down with Charles He, President of Zhuhai Autism Society, and he believes there are many challenges for his students attending regular schools due to the difficulties of social interaction that are associated with the disorder. Charles mentioned that he personally has seen changes in all of his students, where they have become more friendly and built confidence.
Not only is the day care centre great for the children, but many parents of the children indirectly benefit from the programme. Providing care after school hours alleviates parents of taking care of their children this time, which allows them to work full time and improve their financial situation so they can take care of the entire family without the added stress. With demand growing every year for the day care centre at ZAS, there are now around 7 to 10 students on the waiting list, in which the charity will require an increase of funding to fulfil this demand.
Read more about our visits to ZAS projects here
Charity Promotion Association of Zhuhai (CPAZ)
The Charity Promotion Association of Zhuhai is involved with providing financial aid to underprivileged members of society with such as morally and financially destitute, and young students as orphans or from single parent families that are unable to finance basic education. Through CPAZ, students from Pingsha Primary School received funding for school fees and love packs, consisting of a backpack, globe, notepads and stationary. This support allows children from low income families to have an equal start in primary education.
This year, volunteers delivered the love packs at Pingsha Primary School directly to 50 students in need. Donors and volunteers also visited many of the families, learning of the hardships they faced prior to receiving funding, and how their personal lives improved since receiving help from CTC.
From everyone at Come Together Community, we would like to extend a huge thank you to our sponsors and everyone that got involved in 2018. With your support, we can continue to fund these amazing projects in 2019 and improve the lives of many families.
Don’t forget to keep up to date with our social media pages to see what we get up to in 2019!
Check out the collaboration opportunities on our eagerly awaited 8th Annual Come Together Charity Music Festival
Come Together is the CTC’s flagship event. The 2019 Come Together Charity Music Festival is back at LETS Livehouse, Zhuhai again and will be held on Saturday 7th Dec. We cordially invite you to particpate in this incredible event by sponsoring and giving back to the local community.
How to collaborate? 如何与我们合作？
Interested in collaborating with us in 2019 Come Together Charity Music Festival?
Sponsorship Manager & Board Member 赞助经理兼董事会成员: Andy Board
0756-6292669 | 13543019070
CTC Volunteer Accountant 志愿者会计：小雷小姐
Last Year’s Amazing Sponsors 去年的有爱心的赞助商
CTC intern Ella and volunteer Jen have been to see the exciting work CTC local charity partner, Lanjing Ling, is up to at the moment. With the summer vacation well under way, Lanjing Ling are running a variety of classes every day. What a great way to spend your summer days! The children were having an amazing time learning and playing with teachers, parents and friends. It was great for Jen and Ella to see that CTC’s funding is going towards such important and positive.
CTC funds Lanjing Ling’s classes for children with autism and educational needs to aid their cognitive development and motor skills, and provide them with key skills for day-to-day life.
Ella and Jen met Cassie, who helps to organise the classes. She told them all about all the amazing work they’ve been up to recently, and about how much her own son enjoys the classes!
The day began with social interaction classes, where primary school aged children were learning about good classroom behaviour and etiquette, whilst reviewing some of their school work. A special education teacher was there to teach the class and make sure everyone’s needs were accounted for. One parent told Ella and Jen how thankful they were for the fun and colourful classroom they are now using, and explained how it made the experience so much better for the children.
They then travelled to another social interaction class for kindergarten aged children. This one involved a cool and colourful set of tubes at the front of the class. By each taking a cup of coloured water and pouring it down the correct coloured pipe to mix below, the children were learning about the primary colours while practicing how to take turns, volunteer for tasks and follow instructions. It looked like such a fun and interactive way to learn, Ella almost asked to have a go herself!
It’s not all in the classroom though. Next stop was a basketball class, where the children were able to use some of their boundless energy to learn some ball skills. After lunch was the baking class. The children rolled out dumpling cases and filled them. They then stocked up on freshly steamed dumplings, ready for an action-packed football class. Learning how to cook and playing sports helps the children develop key collaborative and motor skills, while also having a great time!
An amazing day for both Jen and Ella, and a great opportunity to see how much fun the children and parents were having all day. They were learning such a variety of key skills that they could carry with them into later life, all in a safe and welcoming environment. A key part of the CTC ethos is transparency. That’s why it is important to CTC that we visit the classes we fund and we welcome anyone else to do the same. Thank you so much to everyone from Lanjing Ling and everyone who supports them and CTC. Let’s make sure we can continue to fund incredible work like this!
CTC intern Kim, visited two projects on Saturday 13th January 2018. One is the Skating class, which is funded by Come Together Community and organised by Zhuhai Autism Society (ZAS). The class caters for 20-25 children each week, with three instructors on hand to help teach and guide them through the session.
2018年1月13日 周六， CTC实习生Kim访问了两个项目。其中一个是轮滑班，该项目由CTC资助、并由珠海自闭症协会(ZAS)组织。每周有20-25个孩子参加这个班，有3个老师在场帮助和指导他们。
The children who take part in the class are involved with Zhuhai Autism Society and activities such as skating is thought to help children improve their gross and motor skills. As well as this, it brings the children and their families together, building a social network that they can interact and communicate with. The physical benefits of exercise are also noted.
Briana, who is another intern in China (on the same programme as Kim), went with Kim to visit the project. She was one of the Christmas gift donors for the gift drive last month and was keen to see some of the work that CTC funds and that ZAS does. This is what she had to say…
“Today I had the opportunity to go and see one of CTC’s funded projects with the Zhuhai Autism Society. There was a group activity of rollerblading held at a park on a beautiful and sunny afternoon. It was such a heart-warming experience seeing these children excitedly enjoy what would be considered a normal activity. The way that the children lit up as they were able to skate around and learn to skate was incredible. If they fell, they were so resilient and quick to get up, not even phased by the stumble, but eager to keep skating. It was so gorgeous and truly awe inspiring.
You could feel the hard work and love as you watched the parents and instructors take care of the children and show them different skills. If you were a passer-by, you would never guess that these children were autistic at all as they appeared like they had been skating their whole lives! It is rewarding to see this kind of development and progression in society, reminding you that everyone deserves to be loved and treated equally. Small amounts of compassion go a long way and the work that these two groups do proves that.”
The Skating class runs for 1.5 hours every Saturday afternoon and there is a combination of free/individual skating and structured class. The session starts off with the children freely skating around. The instructors go around the group helping individuals as they need it, to help them get on their feet and started for the lesson. Normally the group is split into two groups for the guided part of the session, with older children and younger children split. The older children taking part usually can’t communicate verbally very well, so they benefit with the instruction when the teachers show them with examples of how to do each activity.
The teaching part of the lesson consists of things such as how to fall, how to get up, balancing exercises, stretching exercises and jumping. The children all paid attention throughout these activities, which shows how they enjoy the project. The instructor used a whistle to indicate the time for them to move from exercise to exercise.
CTC has been working with ZAS for many years now, and the representatives always enjoy visiting their classes to see where and how the funds donated are being used, to help those within the autism and special needs community here in Zhuhai.