Highlights from China Charity Volunteer Work
In order to identify opportunities to pursue BigBall charity activities in China in accordance with the BECHA (BigBall Earth Caring humanity Association) charter, CEO James Tang visited many cities and villages in various provinces in China from May to August, 2014, including Anhui, Hubei, Henan, Shanxi, Sichuan, Jilin, Liaolin, and Heilongjiang. The trip was eye-opening in realizing the serious environmental problems, particularly smog, throughout China, albeit less severe in the northeastern provinces of Jilin, Liaolin, and Heilongjiang. It was also difficult to find and collect traditional heritage ethnic baby carriers, even in ethnic Korean and Manchurian autonomous administrative districts. With unbelievable luck, however, he was able to find people who could hand-make those traditional baby carriers from their memories and were also willing to help after hearing the BigBall mission of exhibiting extinct art of making heritage baby carriers for the sake of raising public awareness of great motherly love for their children.
1) Ethnic Korean baby carrier custom made by a Korean fabric and clothing store owner in Yanji, a Korean autonomous district city in Jilin province near the North Korean border.
2) Ethnic Manchurian baby carrier custom made by a Manchurian fabric store owner in Qinyuan, a Manchurian autonomous district in Liaolin province.
3) Ethnic Han baby carrier custom made by an elderly Christian lady in the Meiheko city of Jilin province with tradition Han fabric donated by a fabric store owner.
Other activities on behalf of BECHA include:
Donation of a new refrigerator to the home of elderly BigBall supporters in a coal mine town who had suffered stomach problems from leftover food in the hot summer.
Launched a “Saving Little Brother Dragon (LBD)” project in a farmer’s village
During a visit to BigBall supporters in Jilin province, James met this intellectually challenged young man Wang Zhon-Liang（王忠良), nicknamed Little Brother Dragon (小龙哥）by his family. He is a small built young man who has suffered from brain damage since childhood due to eating his parent’s diabetics medicine as candy. His father who was a decent and honest farmer passed away a couple of year ago after a tragic accident involving his farm equipment. His mother is a loving lady who is now working odd farm jobs to care for this son while recovering from the grief of her husband’s passing.
This family is in need of help particularly due to the behavior problems from Little Brother Dragon (LBD) who is apparently in a downward spiral. He started to lie and steal liquor from his family and family friends to get drunk. In early August, he drank too much of the stolen liquor and also took his mother’s medicine to escape from his mental hell. He got so sick and tried to induce vomiting by poking his own throat with a tree branch which caused bleeding from his esophagus and had to be hospitalized with blood transfusion. This also happened twice before during the last 2 years and his bad behavior has caused so much misery to his mother that all her relatives became very angry that they used harsh language and physical punishment at this young man as James observed during hospital visits.
With the approval from the BECHA Board, a proposal was made to LBD’s family to give him a last chance to climb out of his vicious cycle by using positive re-enforcement to reward him for good behavior. A detailed plan was approved by his family and also supported by the village leaders. The goal is to provide positive energy in correcting his behavior problems by giving him small cash rewards (to reduce his need to steal from others) for good behavior and to fine him for bad behaviors. A notebook is used to document his behavior daily and a nightly review is conducted by his mother. Meanwhile, the village leaders are trying to find people who can teach him how to make handicrafts, such as weaving baskets, to be purchased by BigBall for potential exhibitions in the future.
A good talk with LBD to get his agreement before starting this project.
Initial results during the 1st month have been encouraging with LBD’s behavior significantly improved (over 90% of days without any bad behavior while helping his mother with farm work and he has also quit drinking alcohols to save money). We continue to pray for LBD in his success to gain self-respect/confidence and to live a happier life.
December 2014 “Saving LBD Project” Update:
LBD continues to behave well without any incidents of stealing/drinking liquors. He is enjoying the rewards from his good behavior. During the month of November, his mother logged 29 out of 30 days in good behavior, with only 1 incident of asking for a cigarette from another person in the village. He has become a well-mannered young man and proactively helped his mother in the farm work. He also made about 100 pot-cleaning brushes out of the dried sorghum stems after the harvest season for his home and elders in the village. In order to keep him busy during winter time where there is no farm work, he will be encouraged to continue to make more handicrafts for BECHA to buy and to distribute to more village homes where wood burning stoves are used for cooking.
March 2015 Saving LBD Project Update
BECHA CEO James Tang visited LBD’s family and village leaders during the Chinese lunar New Year and was pleased to learn from the village chief Mr. Wang that this project has significantly improved LBD’s behavior problems. He said this has been a good year for LBD since we started the Saving LBD project based on inputs from villagers. He gave a ‘thumb up’ for BECHA to continue this successful project in 2015.
Sharing a story about Mr. Zhang’s family
Mr. Zhang Hong-Wu张鸿武 is in his 40’s and has been handicapped since childhood with his right hand deformed in an porridge cooking burn accident when he was just 3 yrs. of age. His misfortunes worsened 2 yrs ago in another accident when he broke his neck while working on a roof and fell from the ladder. He lost all senses from the neck down and has been laying in bed with his slightly mentally ill wife caring for him and their 3yrs old daughter who is a bright and cheerful little girl.
The good hearted village chief Mr. Wang has been helping this family by obtaining a minuscule social welfare payment for the family as well as by raising money to buy an electric tricycle for Mrs. Zhang to make extra money by hauling goods.
In one of his visits to the farming family of Little Brother Dragon, BECHA CEO James met with the village chief Mr. Wang and was asked to consider helping Mr. Zhang’s family as a new BECHA charity project in China. On March 13, 2015, James went with Mr. Wang to visit Mr. Zhang’s family in Hei Shan Tou( Black Mountain Top) of Dong Feng District in Jilin Province. The Zhang family’s dwelling is a small room about 5 square meters. There is a hospital bed for Mr. Zhang and another bed for Mrs. Zhang and daughter. Then there is hardly any room for visitors to stand inside this room that was provided by the closedown raw steel factory where Mrs. Zhang used to work. This factory was founded as a private enterprise to provide jobs for handicapped people but could not survive the harsh economic conditions for the steel factories in China.
As part of the humanitarian mission in caring for less fortunate handicapped people on behalf of the BECHA Board of Directors, James donated ¥1000 RMB to Mr. Zhang’s family during this visit. He will also monitor future needs for this family via local BECHA supporters as part of the China mission.
May 2015 Update
Another ‘Good Behavior ‘ award was given to LBD for sustaining good behavior in helping his mother with Spring farm work and refraining from stealing liquor and medicines in the village. Also attending this award dinner is the Village Chief Mr. Wang.
Another attempt to collect ethnic baby wrappers took James to Ji-An at the eastern side of Jilin province bordering North Korea. The border line is in the middle of the not-so-wide Yalu River. You can see NK’s border watch shed with bare eyes. Old ladies washing clothes in the river is about the only common life style on both side of the river. After sunsets, there are vibrant lights and hundreds of dancing ‘damas’ at the Ji-An side of the river bank, while a complete darkness painted across the river dabbed with only occasional flash lights from the NK border patrol. No luck with finding traditional baby wrappers this time. The villagers are mainly ethnic Han. They have not used traditional baby wrappers for many years.
July 2015 LBD Update
Another award was presented to LBD in July, 2015 to recognize his continued good behavior during the past 2 months. His mother was pleased to see him working hard to help with the farm work; and there were no incidents of stealing liqors in this period. Also, he helped an elderly couple to trasfer 3500 kg of coal to prepare for the winter and helped another villager to recover a lost wallet with valuables inside, including ID cards and bank cards. He was praised for his successful sustainment of his good behavior and was urged to refrain from asking for cigaretts from other villagers as an area for improvement.
Started to teach ESL in China
开始在吉林省做義工當ESL老师，在易特國际教育學苑帮助25个初中生及小学高年生扎實美语口语，本周课程包括家庭，问候，學校，购物，点菜，學做Salad，等等。我发现这里的孩子们學习興趣高，進步神速，又得到校长及多位本地老师的全力支持，甚感欣慰！BECHA CEO James Tang has started a new volunteer work as an ESL teacher at the Elite International Education Institute in Jiling Province of China. He is helping 25 students (9 – 16 yrs old) to understand and practice speaking American English. For the first week, they covered many topics, including Family, Greetings, School Life, Shopping, Ordering Food, and Making Salad. James is very pleased to see these kids highly motivated and making significant progress in just 5 days, as well as thrilled to have the full support from the Elite Headmaster and several local teachers.
August, 2015 Updates
美国碧波为张鸿武女儿张旨轩提供三个月上幼儿园的助學金让她的學习不被父亲的伤残而中断。The BigBall Earth Caring Humanity Association（BECHA）provided scholarship to fund 3 months of school costs for Zhang Zhi-Xuan, the 4 yrs old daughter of Mr. Zhang Hong-Wu who was paralyzed from neck down due to an accident while working on a roofing job.
RT more than 3000 KM drive to Hohehot, capital of Inner Mongolia Autonomous region, to look for ethnic traditional baby carriers. Locals were unwilling to sell their treasured old collections, so I had to purchase a traditional young girl’s ceremonial dress and hat as souvenirs. The city of Hohehot was built in 15th century by a direct descendant of Gengis Khan who enabled the harmonious melting pot between the Mongo and the Han people in Mongolia. The Tibetan style Buddhist temple Da Zhao Shi was among the best preserved Tibetan temple in China.
September, 2015 update
回美之前，特地去看看颈以下全部瘫患的张鸿武女儿张旨轩，并再为美国碧波关怀地球人文协会发给她助学金。看到她在幼儿园内快乐的学习成长，非常欣慰！Visited the nursery school where Zhang Zhi-Xuan is learning and playing with other kids and provided another scholarships on behalf of BECHA to support her tuition there. She’s the daughter of Mr. Zhang Hon-Wu who is paralyzed from neck down in a roofing job accident. Very happy to see her enjoying this opportunity to study and grow in such a nice environment.
1Q 2016 Update
Teaching ESL as a volunteer and helping a 13-year old local girl who is a Leukemia M5 patient
我代表美国碧波關懐地球人文协会联合易特国际教育共同为本地白血病患者13歲的管羽丰小妹妹捐出4000元人民币，希望能够抛砖引玉，有更多的善心人士及慈善机构来帮助这个品學兼优的孩子從痛苦的白血病疗程中坚强地走出来，她康复之后，也一定会把爱心传递下去，并且关注生态环境的保护。On behalf of the BigBall Earth Caring Humanity Association in the U.S., I worked with teachers at the Elite International Education in donating 4000 RMB to the local 13-year old girl Guan Yu-Feng who has been a model student but was stricken with Leukemia M5 at the end of 2015. We hope to inspire more generous donations from kind people and charity organizations to help pay for her costly and painful medical treatment. I have no doubt that she will pass on her love and kindness to other people after recovery and will do her best to care for the earth and the environment in which we live.
LBD Update – January 2016
农村青年小龙哥开心地接收美国碧波慈善机构的奖金，继续鼓励他维持良好行为不让妈妈操心。这三个月，小龙哥没向他人要烟抽，帮老妈干活，一个人里外把父亲的三年祭日酒席全部打点，完美得没话说。又学好了用地里收集的擀秸做出扫帚及锅刷。期待他下三个月有更完美的表现。Young farmer LBD happily received a good behavior award from the BigBall charity organization in the U. S. He continued to be motivated by this award to maintain his good behavior in the village to alleviate the burden of his widowed mother. In the past 3 months, he stopped asking for cigarettes from villagers, organized the 3rd year memorial service banquet for his father, and also mastered the toolmaking skills in making brooms and pan cleaning brushes out of dried harvest wastes in the farm. I look forward to seeing a perfect behavior record during the next 3 months.
Zhang Hong-Wu Update February 2016
今天去黑山头探望因做屋顶工摔下而致高位瘫痪的张鸿武，并代表美国碧波慈善机构给他女儿奖学金做为三个月的幼儿园学费。也教他媳妇帮他开始做复健动作，看看能不能把脊椎的神经系统再连接回来。过两个月再评估效果。Visited Mr. Zhang Hong-Wu, a local roof worker who fell off the ladder and has been paralyzed from neck down. Presented tuition scholarship to his daughter on behalf of the BigBall charity organization in the U.S. to allow her attending a nursery school for another 3 months. Also taught his wife to begin a rehab exercise to see if it can help heal his spinal nerve system. Will assess the effectiveness during the next visit in April
March 2016 Zhang Hong- Wu Update
Visited Mr. Zhang Hong-Wu’s family today and very pleased to see his much improved back and arms muscle flexibility after doing 2 months of touching toes exercises. Delivered a six- months tuition scholarship to his daughter Zhi-Xuan on behalf of the BigBall Earth Caring Humanity Association in the US.
April 2016 Teaching Kindergarteners English
Successfully completed a new bilingual approach in teaching 30+ kindergarteners oral English, which wouldn’t be possible with English only teaching. Thanks to the Headmistress Ms. Lou for the opportunity at her well-run kindergarten!
April 2016 LBD Update
He was happy to receive a good behavior award for the last 3 months from the BigBall Earth Caring Humanity Association in the US. Despite a very stressful Chinese New Year period for him, he was determined to regain his strength in order to be able to take care of his mother. Now he is physically strong enough to help with the farm work as the busy Spring time arrives. 小龙哥开心地领取美国碧波人文协会提供的优良品行奖。过去的三个月他的体能受了农历年的压力影响而一直卧病，但他为了要照顾母亲挺了下来。现在已经能够在开春农忙的时候下田干活了！
September 2016 LBD Update
Little Brother Dragon (LBD) happily received his good behaviors award for his zero behavioral mistakes in May-July period – best record since we started the “Saving LBD” project two years ago. 小龙哥今天开心地收到五至七月零缺点奖金，这是两年前开始“拯救小龙哥“项目以来他表现最好的三个月。
October 2016 Zhang Hong-Wu Update
After 6 months of touching toes exercise that I taught him during my last visit, Zhang Hong-Wu, the crippled worker who was disabled from a fall from the roofing work, is now able to move about in an electric wheelchair. What a great miracle! His family welcomed me with joy today when I presented another scholarship on behalf of BECHA to his daughter Zhang Zhi-Xuan to help her continue her attendance in a kindergarten. 六个月前，我曾教过因在做瓦工时摔伤而高位截瘫的张鸿武坐在床上用手交叉握脚趾做复建，现在他已能自己操控电动轮椅出行了，真是一个很棒的奇迹！他的家人今天非常开心的欢迎我再一次的代表美国碧波颁发给他女儿张旨轩上幼儿园的助学金。
September-October 2016 ESL classes in China
Successfully completed this Fall’s volunteer work visit in China which included teaching 3 ESL classes for senior kindergarten students(bilingual method) and senior elementary school students(English only). I was happy to see students all enjoyed interactive teaching methods and showed significant improvement on their oral English skills as well as knowledge on American festivals and folk songs.
Also served as the Chief Judge for an English speech contest and presented the First Place Award.
Highly motivated students at the Elite International Education Institute. Students learned about festivals in the U.S., such as Thanksgiving and Halloween.
November 2016 LBD Update
Met with Little Brother Dragon again before completing this year’s charity work in China. He continued good behaviors and helped his mother in the farm during the busy harvesting season. He was very happy to receive another award for sustaining good behaviors. He then used part of his award to help his grand parents in fighting lung cancer by quitting tobacco smoking, which is a new BigBall project (Saving Lungs) with cash awards as incentives to kick the smoking habit.
Mar – May 2017 LBD Update
Visited with LBD several times and reports from his mother and his village chief have been perfect! He helped his mother with house work and the spring farm work, as well as walked miles to collect recyclables in exchange for additional income for his family. He stopped drinking alcohols and has been trying to quit smoking as well. I was happy to present two perfect behavior awards for the first six months in 2017.
Feb-May 2017 Zhang Hong-Wu Update
The recovery from his spinal injury has been deemed miraculous by the neural surgeons in Beijing. He regained his muscular strength in his arms and hands, but still has no senses in his legs. I taught him and his wife a new way to apply acupressure on locations of his legs to help stimulate the important nerve systems Running down his legs. I will come back to visit him in my next China visit to see if any progress to improve his mobility. I presented two 3-month tuition scholarships for his daughter to continue her schooling.
Apri 2017 Assistance to an Elderly Cancer Patient
The 76-yr old retired coal miner Mr. Boo was not expected to survive his 4th stage lung cancer last year, but his condition has stabilized with the help of some herb medicines as well as the quitting of smoking by his wife under an incentive cash reward provided by BigBall. We also provided a steel frame bedside toilet to avoid risk of going to the out-house.
Spring 2017 Oral English Classes for 5th and 6th Graders
Held two classes to teach these children oral English in various scenarios, American folk songs, and commonly used American slang words. It was a lot of fun to teach those highly motivated students.
Continued to provide tuition and fees assistance to Mr. Zhang Hong-Wu’s daughter through 2018. Mr. Zhang has miraculously recovered from most of his disabling spinal cord injury and is able to work as a factory security team leader.
Also continued to provide good behavior incentive awards to the brain damaged young farmer Little Brother Dragon to encourage him sustain his good behavior in helping his widowed mother in the farm. Continued to receive good reports from his village chief.
Started to expand charity work, including providing clothes and shoes to children at an orphanage and money to buy food for homeless seniors at a shelter in Jilin Province.
CEO James visited the orphanage in Dalian in February and donated 25 sets of Chinese Language, Math, and English Language text books for 25 elementary school age kids, as well as some picture books for 27 preschool kids there and was greeted by the director and teachers at the orphanage.
CFO Michael also visited this orphanage in March and donated four cases of whole milk for the preschool children there.
CEO James continued to teach ESL in Liaoning Province for over 200 students as part of the Web International teaching team. Also served as the judge during the advancement assessment.
James also visited southern part of Taiwan in April and demonstrated Taiji Qigong exercises for senior citizens.
Continued to provide good behavior incentive awards to young farmer Little Brother Dragon in Jilin province. Started a new project to provide nutritional food supplements to homeless elderly people in Jilin province.
James also taught ESL for about 500 students in Dalian, Liaoning province covering American slangs and proverbs in addition to grammar, pronunciation, and oral English. He also donated needed items for children living in the orphanage. Shown in photos were the orphanage director Mr. Sun and teachers Ms. Ge and Mr. Sun.
1-3Q 2020 Update
Provided financial help to an elderly farmer in Anhui province to repair the flood damage to his home. This year the heavy rain and the overflow of rivers nearby caused more severe flooding: but he’s safe now with a new roof and new walls.
The English classes have been conducted online on Zoom platform due to COVID19 travel restrictions. More than 200 students attended either the Oral English or the Business English classes as of September, 2020.
3Q2020 LBD Update
It’s heartwarming to hear that our cash award was able to help LBD receive proper medical treatment and he is now fully recovered.
4Q2020 LBD Update
LBD in December 2020 after receiving proper medication. He’s enjoyng a peaceful winter in his village home.
As of June, 2021 LBD has fully recovered from the TB problems has been helping his mother with the farming work. His illness and the treatment also provided the opportunity to appreciate his well being. His good behavior has been sustained for several years now and the Bigballearth board directors have agreed to continue the award program for as long as his good behavior is sustainable.
Online English classes continued in 2021 to provide practices on spoken English dialogues, Business English topics, as well as mock tests for International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
Funding was provided to help pay medical treatment of a patient in Dalian with stomach cancer, as well as an elderly farmer in Anhui province, also in the final stage of stomach cancer.
LBD’s health is back to normal and he’s been helping his mother with farm work, including harvesting the corn crops. His good behavior has been sustained during this period and was awarded additional cash for encouragement. This project has lasted over 7 years now and we’re very pleased to have saved this young farmer from self destruction due to brain damage since childhood.
Despite the COVID pandemic and travel restrictions, James continued to provide online Business English and Oral English lessons to over 1000 attendees in 2021. Online donation platforms (北京韩红爱心基金会， 水滴筹， etc.) were also used to provide cash donations for the needy.
LBD project update: Little Brother Dragen has completely recovered from Tuberculosis (TB) and continued to sustain 100% good behavior. It’s heart warming to see this brain damaged village boy turned into a handsome young man and working hard to help his widowed mother with farm and house work. We started “Saving LBD project” almot 8 years ago by rewarding his good behavior with cash to buy his own needs instead of begging from other villiagers for cigaretts and petty things. His good behavior needs to be verified by other villagers and the village chief in order to receive the cash award. It has been a very successful project and we will continue to endorse this project.