"Where sunshine's hidden,
Youth comes unbidden.
Mosses bud like rice,
yet bloom like peonies."
(Translated by Dr. Peter Jingcheng Xu)
Written by the Qing dynasty poet Yuan Mei three hundred years ago, the poem Moss recently flooded the screens because of a volunteer teacher and children of the mountains. Their innocent singing voice of the poem on CCTV, China's state TV broadcaster, moved hundreds of millions of Chinese people. In 2013, Liang Jun volunteered to teach in Shimenkan, Guizhou.
On June 10, 2018, the second "Samuel Pollard Gardener Award" ceremony was held in Beijing.
The award was initiated by Shenzhen Pollard Shimenkan Education Public Foundation and Beijing For China (or Weihua)Public Welfare Foundation, aiming to "finding Pollard in the contemporary era." It rewards volunteer teachers who have been supporting the distant poor areas like Sichuan, Yunnan, and Guizhou for a long time or those who support them in other ways. The commendation not only provides financial support but also shows recognition and support for the voluntary work.
Liang proposed to set up a new sub-fund under the Shimenkan Education Public Foundation in order to pay attention to children of the mountains. He said again, "Sometimes a moss doesn't have to be a peony. It has its own value."
The purpose of the sub-fund was to "urge people to give attention to children in the corners nobody pays attention to."
"We hope that children can imitate mosses to bloom like peonies."Added Liang.
The most touching part was the acceptance speeches of the recipients of awards. Eight volunteer teachers and two charity organizations were given prizes.
It was worth mentioning that the award-winning teachers showed two features: their zeal for volunteer teaching was not quenched with time; post-90s university graduates appeared as a new generation.
On Oct 22, 2016, six volunteer teachers and a volunteer teaching team were awarded in the first "Samuel Pollard Gardener Award" ceremony.
- Translated by Karen Luo