Across China: Children's Day celebrated, with more care for special needs

Source: Xinhua| 2017-06-01 23:06:37|Editor: huaxia
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BEIJING, June 1 (Xinhua) -- Children across China celebrated the International Children's Day on Thursday.

Many children had a half day or the whole day off school to attend galas or visit parks, museums and bookstores with their families.

In Lhasa, capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, more than 700 children from Tibet Regional Experimental Kindergarten, one of the oldest preschools in the region, performed dances and songs for their parents and grandparents. .

"I have taught here for 25 years. and the most noticeable change is that children now have more free time to play. Many young parents do not force children to study like the older generation did," said Tamdrin, a kindergarten teacher.

In 2016, the regional government invested 1 billion yuan (about 160 million U.S. dollars) to renovate and expand 458 kindergartens and hire bilingual Tibetan and Mandarin-speaking teachers. At the end of 2016, 96,777 children were enrolled in the region's 1,028 kindergartens.

There was a focus on more support for children with special needs this International Children's Day. On Thursday, a sports event was organized for over 850 children at an orphanage in Zhengzhou, capital of central China's Henan Province.

"Almost all of the children here have disabilities or were born with diseases. Many were sent here after being abandoned by their families. The children love sports," said Hou Xiaoxue, deputy director of the orphanage.

The center employees around 400 staff and also hires volunteers to work as caregivers, living with the children to provide a stable family-like environment.

"Applicants must have kind hearts and be committed, because if they leave it can affect the children emotionally," said Hou.

Currently 30 couples are volunteer "parents" for the children. Their jobs include cooking meals, sending the children to class and taking them for medical treatment.

"These children deserve a good childhood," said one of the volunteers who is surnamed Li.

"I hope events like Children's Day can raise more awareness about children with special needs," Li said.

Zhang Xiao works for a charity in Beijing that helps children left-behind by their migrant parents.

"We don't organize special activities for Children's Day. We don't want to make it a one day thing, but instead want a long-term system which provides a safe and caring place for the children," Zhang said. Enditem