Story of Project Leader for Youth With Special Needs and Disabilities

Two wooden hearts
Two wooden hearts (photo:
By Springs ShiJuly 26th, 2023

A female believer, entrusted with the responsibility of overseeing a project within a non-profit social organization, shared her journey of faith and ministry.

This project, at its core, is dedicated to serving special needs children and disabled youth between the ages of 6 and 18, with mild to moderate conditions. The project seeks to empower these individuals by equipping them with essential life skills, fostering self-awareness, nurturing social aptitude, facilitating community integration, imparting safety education, and providing vocational training. As a foundational principle, the organization endeavors to ensure equitable educational opportunities for these individuals, foster the development of their independent living capabilities, unleash their full potential, and support them in realizing their intrinsic self-worth.

During the visit, I had the privilege of engaging in a discussion with a Christian named Qing, wherein she shared her faith journey and the path that led her into this ministry. Her narrative commenced from her tender years as an inexperienced young girl who embraced Christianity to ultimately assuming the role of a project leader.

Born in the 1970s in a mountain village in Shaanxi Province, she was confronted with the burden of gender bias within her family, where male offspring were favored over females. During her teenage years, she grappled with emotional turmoil, at one point even resorting to stealing her father's liquor and entertaining thoughts of despair.

Fortuitously, during that critical juncture, the message of the gospel reached the remote mountainous region. Subsequently, Qing journeyed to Xi'an, where she was graced with the presence of God and experienced His providential assistance as the people she resided with demonstrated care and support.

At the age of 17, she returned to her hometown and earnestly participated in church gatherings in the suburban precincts of the county, alongside several elderly ladies from her village. Three months later, she underwent the baptism, wholeheartedly committing herself as a devoted follower of Christ, her fervent passion driving her to seek deeper communion with Him.

However, she soon entangled in a romantic relationship that gradually distanced her from her relationship with God. It was not until two years later that an unforeseen job opportunity emerged, which offered her a new direction.

During that period, a local city social welfare institution, in collaboration with a social work agency, embarked on a mission to recruit caregivers dedicated to the nurturing of orphaned and disabled children, seeking individuals of Christian faith for these pivotal roles. Responding to the call, Qing underwent an interview and secured the position.

Initially, she faced challenges in tending to the diverse needs of disabled children, whose tears deeply affected her sensitive heart. Nevertheless, guided by the counsel of her father, she resolved to persist in her dedication and gradually developed profound empathy and compassion for these children. It was during this time that her boyfriend extended invitations to venture to South China with him on two occasions in pursuit of better prospects, yet she declined the offers. Ultimately, he found affection elsewhere and entered into matrimony with someone else, leaving Qing profoundly hurt and desolate.

At one juncture, she even contemplated taking the drastic measure of ending her life by leaping from the balcony of her second-floor staff dormitory. However, divine intervention came in the form of a fellow female believer who offered steadfast companionship and intercessory prayers, guiding Qing through the tribulations of heartbreak and facilitating her eventual healing.

Reflecting on her years of service within the local institution, Qing candidly admitted that, despite her consistent attendance at church gatherings and attentive listening to sermons, she struggled to integrate biblical teachings into her daily life. This predicament persisted even within an organization that upheld strong Christian values, leaving her feeling somewhat disconnected from her profound faith.

Just as Qing contemplated resignation from her position, the management persuasively implored her to remain, as they were poised to initiate a collaborative venture with a welfare institution in another city within the province, earnestly desiring her involvement in training new caregivers.

Following her relocation to Xianyang City, Shaanxi Province, Qing's tenure extended over two decades. During this extensive period, her journey traversed a transformative arc, propelling her from the role of a trainer to that of an assistant manager and subsequently the manager of the children's department. Ultimately, she served as the short-term CEO of the organization and the permanent director for a long time.

Throughout her years of service, Qing encountered slander and false accusations. However, to her solace, divine providence stood as her unyielding advocate, and those who had leveled accusations against her eventually offered apologies.

No matter how difficult, Qing and her team never give up on their children. As long as there is a glimmer of hope, they spared no effort in raising funds and sought external support to treat the children until the very end. Even if the child could not be rescued, they fervently petitioned God to alleviate the suffering and pain experienced by the children.

- Translated by Abigail Wu

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