All our orphanages now have a large proportion of children with significant special needs, such as Down Syndrome and other cognitive disabilities, cerebral
palsy, autism, and more. Public schools usually will not accept these children, and there are few private special education schools available. Even where they exist, they often will not
accept the orphanage children, especially if they have behavioral issues.
The orphanage staff need to learn to provide these children the education, training, and physical rehabilitation they require, but unfortunately, this type of training is very hard to find in
China. This is currently the area of greatest need for the orphanages and we want to do what we can to help the children and staff.
So in 2018, we began a program to teach the teachers.
In May, two experts from the U.S., Lai Mingci and Wu Liyun, went to China to provide four days of training at the Jingdezhen and Nanchang Social Welfare Institutes. To learn more about that
event, click here.
In August, thirteen teachers attended a two-day workshop in Shangrao by Lisa Jacobs, whose career has focused on teaching visually-impaired children.
Then in June/July 2019, two special education teachers traveled with us on our volunteer trip to Jiangxi province. They met with the orphanage teachers and did some training. They shared
their experiences and answered questions from orphanage staff. They taught together with the orphanage teachers in the special ed classrooms and demonstrated some teaching techniques and ideas
on how to improve behaviors.
Our volunteer training trips are temporarily on hold due to COVID-19, but we hope to resume them later in 2020 and in 2021.