So, I survived my first week! Yay! Here is what I learned in my first week:
1. Roots and Shoots is a cool organization that has very few staff, but most staff usually have a single project, and that is their primary focus. For example, some of the staff are concerned about organic agriculture, educating migrant children about environmental issues, no shark finning, and more.
2. Each day at work is different. My first day, we made origami sharks to write messages and questions for student groups about shark finning and pledging not to eat it. I am proud to have signed this petition.
3. The Roots and Shoots website doesn’t really show the awesome work this organization does. What I mean by this is that they have a Chinese and English webpage, but the Chinese one is more up to date and user friendly and slightly more interactive than their English webpage. But, this program has groups not only at Chinese local schools, but also at International Schools, and usually the leaders at these schools are foreigners, most of whom can’t read the Chinese webpage to understand the awesome environmental education and activist work Roots and Shoots does.
The following is a link for the English for the Clear Water Project page: (Click on the left most tab)
But the Chinese for the same tabs has more information: (Click on the left most tab)
This leads me to Point 4. My purpose for the summer is overall, to help translate materials for all the programs, so as to hopefully help more international schools to become involved in Roots and Shoots. I started with the Agricultural project, and am taking a detour to help on the Clear Water project. My side projects include, but are not limited to the following:
- Participate in a middle school field trip to see a nearby wetlands park 2 hours from the city and see waterfowl and wetland plants
- Trying to update the English pamphlet for the No Shark Fin Project in order to give out to schools and organizations in the autumn semester
- Attend teacher training three day session outside Beijing
- Attend short two day summer camp for children
- And lastly, any fundraising activities. This past week, for example, we held a fundraiser with a bar in a hutong (alleyway in the more central part of Beijing) where 15RMB of each beer sold went to our organization’s No shark fin project. This bar shows a movie each week, and this week was Jaws, so we worked together on this fundraiser. We made over 1200 RMB with the beers and donations, as well as selling some merchandise, like the shark hat I am modeling.
Because of the Chinese Dragon Boat festival this upcoming week, I currently have a 5 day weekend to relax, and see some friends in Beijing. However, I know some weeks, I will be working 6 day work weeks, in which case, I can take off a weekday. That is all for now.