We continue our third year of winter festivities thanks to Toys for Taiwan, generosity of Jia-Xin and all supporters. This year we kicked off the festivities at MuHsiang’s Children’s Home. As stated in previous years, most of what kids really need are not material items but simply time (invaluable) to be spend together and we were most grateful for this opportunity to bring old friends and new friends together at their home.
Our days always begin with fun and creation. Thanks to a generous sponsor of T-shirts (Anonymous J), children were gifted with T-shirts and then given choices on how they wanted to fold and color this gift.
We went through the entire necessary steps of pre-washing the Ts, dunking them in phda ash water, and then putting on gloves so we could tie them with rubber bands. The tie-dye items were fantastic and only possible with the funding created for this project. Adding personalized flavor and twist to your own gift was something the kids loved.
In the meantime, Teacher Snow created a paper Christmas tree for our craft hour and lunch was being prepared.
This year I tried to expand further the theme of giving. Since empowerment is one of our main goals in our mission statement, for those who generally receive gifts to be in a position to give must also be exhilarating. From recycled cardboard boxes, everyone cut out 3-5 circular panels and then decorated with paint and/or clay to create ornaments. They were to first reflect on the going-ons of 2014, and think about who they wanted to say thank you to.
On the backs of the ornaments they wrote down their gratitude and then pasted each up on the tree. This included thanks to Jia-Xin! We ended with a gorgeous Thank You tree, embellished by more crafts sent by kids in Jia-Xin’s class from the US.
We had the aptly nicknamed big friend Christmas, go around to each group to give a small introduction on four local non profits in Taiwan. This included the Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation, TransAsia Sister’s Association, Harmony Home, and Animals Taiwan. These were all groups who have assist Bright Side Projects in their own way. After a vote count, donation for 1000NT was made to Animals Taiwan. We wanted to empower kids with two things – one with knowledge and the other the ability to do something with it, in this way “giving” to others and assisting them, instead of always being on the receiving end.
The late afternoon consisted of a mini break for a mini apple slice lollipop bar. Dark and white chocolate, along with caramel sauce, served as the dip. Finely chopped walnuts, coconut flakes, cinnamon powder, diced cranberries, marshmallows, provided the optional seasoning. Immediately after we rinsed out most of the tie-dyed Ts, watching the kids eyes grow in wonder as we unfurled one shirt after the next and hung them up.
The afternoon’s Kitchen Table featured yet another delicious meal cooked by Sophie Hsu with vegetarian meatloaf topped by cranberry sauce (yes!) and tomato pasta. Piping hot bowls of mushroom soup and tomato soup were cooked by our fantastic partner SALADAY. If you were lucky enough to have joined our workshops you would have been able to have had a nibble, sip, or bite of their amazing food. If not, they have locations throughout Taipei so you can definitely check them out. As for Sophie’s amazing food, you will either have to join us in a workshop or in another activity!
Note that Taipei children’s homes do lack resources but it is always polite to ask them what they need before you bring things over. We were able to take some of the excess to redistribute to others who would benefit most from them, as MuHsiang also has a generous heart for sharing. I hope that this can be the attitidue that we move forward with in life and in love!
Big Friends: 幸福, 姜重伊, 林映廷, 單任捷, Carleen Emma, 曹家修, Wendy Ho, 郭先楷, 陳威, Kaye Yuan, Liz Kuo
Main Photographer: 吳小強, Ken Wang
Kitchen Table: Sophie Hsu & SALADAY (郭先楷)
Benefactors: Jia-Xin Rosenberg, Yuting Hung, Jay, Anonymous, Chieni McCullough, Jo Ying Peng, Ricky Huang, Lou Stillman, Nama & Grampy, Sarah & Anna, The Anna’s Incense Family, Marc & Darlene, Sumo, Sharon and Bruce, Alicia, Sandy Zabludofsky, Kathy, Laura & Jeff Bryer, Samuel et al
Purpose: Spread Santa Jia-Xin’s warmth and love to all and also let others know to give back in turn.
Location: MuHsiang Children’s Home in Taoyuan (Current)
Time: 10:30 – 17:00 (09:30 departures from Taipei)
Tasks: Tie dye station, arts & crafts, creating caramel lollipops.
We will learn: Santa Jia-Xin and giving back to the community, how to tie dye, arts & crafts, different organizations and how they help local communities in Taiwan.
時間：10：30 – 17:00（09:30從台北出發）
Event callout: https://brightside.tw/2014/11/17/2014-1214-santa-jia-xin-rainbow-tie-dyes-and-white-elephants/
Tags: wrap up