Chinese New Year 2017, Celebrating China’s Diversity with MBL

MBL Chinese Spring Festival has successfully launched at V&A Museum of Childhood on Saturday, 11th February 2017. As one of the biggest Chinese traditional festivals held in UK, MBL has brilliantly attracted more than 7000 national friends to visit this event, most of whom are from different European countries with various cultural backgrounds, but it does not fade out their passion to engage with Chinese traditional activities. Without those kind volunteers and sponsors offering their efforts, this event can never succeed. Thus, MBL send our great thanks to all our sponsors, volunteers and trustees for devoting your time and energy.

 

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All the volunteers

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One of our workshop leader Ruiyun (小夕) is mainly responded in the area of chinese painting. Under her patient demonstration through hand by hand, all of children were able to draw the Beijing masks at the end of the session with the help from other assistants, like Julie and Eric Cai etc. Other great work could see by storytelling workshop.Minorities costume dressing-up attracted both girls and boys pulling their parents toward the colorful dresses they have never seen before. The moment they saw totally different themselves in the mirror, they were amazed. Some of them were as elegant as princess while some of them were like Master of Kungfu. The Parents were busy taking photos of the kids dancing, jumping, running around and playing Kungfu.Paper-folding/cutting workshop led by Jingyi(静怡) hoffered a fantastic opportunity for kids to enhance their craft skills. Groups of families sat at two sides of long tables, following the instruction of demonstrator and learning from each other. Within 10 minutes, children made out many small paper lanterns in red, yellow, green, which were perfect souvenirs for them. Because of kids’ strong desires, demonstrator had to teach them more, such as making the kitty face. Participants were obsessed and reluctant to leave.

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Guzheng performancer:Tong Pan

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Tea ceremony:Xun Huang

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Kongfu performancer:Yuyu

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Taiji performancer:Ping Ling

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The performance at the afternoon brought audience a great acoustic meal. Pan Tong, Ting Ting and her friends, who represent the young teenagers in MBL, played one piece of Guzheng and one piece of keyboard. Master Huang Xu, played tea performace  and taught Western people to follow it. Yoyo showed his Kungfun and Ping performaced Fan Dance and so on.

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The MBL V&A Museum of Childhood was a resounding success. As one of our supporter put it. “I had a lovely time at V&A and it was the first time we worked together and there will certainly be a lot room for us to improve. We hope to be able to cooperate more with MBL from future events. ” It was a reflection of the ever-increasing dedication and enthusiasm volunteers’ display on a continual basis. We couldn’t have done it without you!

Heartfelt thanks to all volunteers:Yintong,Ping Ling,Julie,Zhigang Pan,Zhihao Chen,Heling,Cai,Yu Yang,Ziyang Zhang,Jingyi Chen,Pingting Lin, Weiwen Wang,Wenjun Ding,Ruiyun He,Yutong Jin,Wenwen Xie,Xun Huang.

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Adoption in Sweden, Denmark, Finland & Netherlands

Netherlands 

News: 

Dutch government will not ban foreign adoption.

Organizations (or useful links):

Sweden 

News: 

An Indian woman met her biological mother after being adopted to Sweden for 42 years.

Organizations (or useful links):

Denmark 

News:

Denmark stops all adoptions from Ethiopia

Organizations (or useful links):

Finland 

News:

Eastern European countries declared wars on child protection agencies in Norway, Finland and the UK for “forced adoption”.

Organizations (or useful links):

World news and misc.  

  • Inter-country adoption of children falls sharply.
  • Recent Activities of MBL
    • The Mother’s Bridge of Love (MBL) is collaborating with V&A Museum of Childhood (Bethnal Green, Cambridge Heath Road, London, E2 9PA) to celebrate Chinese New Year on 11th February (Saturday) 2017. The theme this year is “diverse Chinese culture”.
    • Call for children’s paintings for MBL global charitable events (Stayed tuned for detail)
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Chinese New Year 2017,Celebrating China’s Diversity with MBL

The Chinese New Year is upon us once again. The international charity organisation The Mother’s Bridge of Love (MBL) is staging its annual celebration in collaboration with the renowned V&A Museum of Childhood (Bethnal Green, Cambridge Heath Road, London, E2 9PA) on Saturday 11th February 2017.

Surprisingly to many in the West, there are 56 ethnic groups within China. This year’s theme is centred on this dynamism within the rich, vibrant and exciting tapestry of Chinese society and its culture. You will see a variety of fascinating performances throughout the day and our group of MBL specialists will introduce the varied ethnic groups. The colourful costumes, folk dance and music, and their links with other bordering countries will be demonstrated. At the same time, the usual classic and popular activities such as learning to speak and write in Chinese, costumes photo opportunities, paper cutting and mask making will be available throughout the day. We look forward to welcoming all families to participate and celebrating the China’s diversity with us.

The charity The Mother’s Bridge of Love was set up in 2004 by the internationally acclaimed Chinese author Xinran. Its aim is to promote Chinese culture for Children and reach out to Chinese children from all corners of the world. MBL is enjoying its collaboration with V&A Museum of Childhood for the fourth year. Having enjoyed the Chinese New Year activities, the families can also have the opportunity to sample the extensive collections of toys, childhood equipment and costumes that have been in the Museum’s collection since 1872.

So, come and join us, a fun and educational day out is waiting for you on Saturday, 11th February 2017!

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Love on the Road – Visiting ‘left-behind’ children in a mountainous region of Sichuan province.

At 5am on 18 December 2016, we (a group MBL volunteers) set off on our journey. First we flew from Nanjing to Chengdu, from where we drove for more than 8 hours on mountainous roads before arriving at our destination – a group of schools up in the mountains of Sichuan province:

Hongchun Primary School

Junlian County Shilong Primary School

Junlian County Mutan Primary School, Gong County

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A common sky, the same age, a shared culture… But living conditions which couldn’t be more different

Hongchun Primary School, Junlian County
6 teachers, 6 classes with a total of 131 students. Students are mainly ‘left-behind children’ from villages in the surrounding area.

Mutan Primary School, Gong County
Founded in 1995, Mutan School is located southwest of Gongteng village. There are a total of two school buildings – one new and one old – 5 teachers and 5 classes with a total of 78 students, who mostly come from the local village. More than half of the children’s parents work in different parts of China.

Here, a teacher will be responsible for teaching all classes to a whole year-group

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Love & Care 

Some children here in the mountains walk for over 2 hours in flimsy shoes to get to school, come rain, shine or snow.

There is no heating in the classrooms, and many of the students suffer from frostbite.

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Hope – In pursuit of knowledge and happiness

No matter how hard, no matter the obstacle, their will to learn is undimmed.

In their eyes you see their focus, in their smile you see their passion.

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Message of Love – Library Donations

MBL volunteers have been setting up school libraries and making donations in impoverished parts of China for over 12 years. On this visit to Sichuan province, they set up the 19th, 20th, and 21st libraries.

Volunteer Frank often says that what we are giving these children are not libraries, but wings that give these children a chance to see beyond the mountains they live in. They may be small, but these libraries are filled with joy.

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Feel – Joining the class 

Hello everyone, my name is Lily. I am 10 years old and I am the youngest MBL volunteer. Today I joined the local kids in DT, Sports and English class.

These classes were all prepared by the big sisters from the MBL volunteer centre.

I was really surprised that it was the first time these children had these kinds of classes, because they don’t have the right equipment.

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Treasure – Treasure the time we have

Hi everyone, I’m Zhang Hong. At 63 years old, I’m the oldest MBL volunteer.

I want to take everything I have seen and heard here back to the city, to tell my child and many other children from the city about what life is like up here in the mountains, about children who grow up in poverty without parents , but are still willing to work hard for a better future.

Children from the city should treasure all they have.

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Donations

Gonghe School

Hongchun School

Shilong School

Books

880

860

1150

Bookcases

4

3

/

Heaters

6

5

6

Computers

2

2

2

Files

One set

One set

One set

Other

Clothing

Clothing

Clothing

 

Organizers

The Mothers’ Bridge of Love

Nanjing Volunteer Centre

Sino-UK Bridge Cultural Education

Our heartfelt thanks to: 

MBL volunteers: Frank Pan, Julie Zhu, Pan Tong,  Zhang Hong,  Zhao Haisong,  Zhao Yutong, Zhou Jing, Dong Pei, Wei Yonghong, Xu Mingyi, Liu Wei, Wu Fengjie and Liu Huayi.

Will Spence for translating the text from Chinese to English. 

Robert Coates Family for their donation of NZ $5,000 to support MBL B4K project & Shilong primary shool library

Li Yuan and her family for sponsoring the courier services

Mrs Yang’s support of RMB1000 to MBL volunteer center to buy books.

 

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Adoption news and organizations in Brazil and other countries in South America

News:

Brazil Eases Child adoption for Foreigners
“The National Council of Justice (CNJ) moved to approve a change in the country’s National Adoption Registry (CNA) that facilitates the adoption of Brazilian children by foreign would-be parents.”

Adoption Rules in Brazil

“According to a report by CNA, which is the National Adoption Register in Brazil, there were over 5.400 children and adolescents ready for adoption in Brazil in 2013. Of these, 3.000 were male and 2.400 were female. Also, slightly more than 32% of all children and adolescents ready for adoption in Brazil were caucasians.”

I’m a Child of Argentina’s “Disappeared”

“Hundreds of babies of parents killed by Argentina’s military dictatorship were given new families and identities, their true origins kept a secret. Jorgelina was one of them.”

Organizations:

Orphan Care Alliance – South America 

Across The World Adoptions – Brazil

Children’s Home Society of Minnesota – Brazil

Hand in Hand International Adoptions – Brazil

RainbowKids Adoption & Child Welfare Advocacy – Brazil 

Nightlight Christian Adoptions – Nicaragua 

La Vida International – Colombia

A Love Beyond Borders – Caribbean and South America

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Happy New Year of 2017 from MBL!

MBL New Year Greeting 2017MBL wishes you and your loved ones a Happy New Year! We’re deeply grateful for your support and encouragement, and look forward to another wonderful year ahead.

If you would like to make a donation, please visit here.

(A big thank you to our volunteer Gloria for designing the greeting card.)

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The 2016 Annual MBL Team Leaders’ Gathering

2016 MBL London Team Leader GatheringA group of MBL team leaders gathered at Xinran’s house in London on 10 December for an early Christmas party. It was a very happy occasion spent catching up with old friends and meeting new ones. To all those who could not make it – we miss you!  

It’s been a wonderful year for MBL, as we continue striving to build bridges of understanding between China and the West and between adoptive culture and birth culture, while also helping children in rural China gain access to more books and education.

Thank you, our amazing volunteers, for your tireless contribution to The Mothers’ Bridge of Love. Thank you, MBL friends, for your unwavering support. Without you, we wouldn’t be here!

We wish you and your loved ones a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 

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The latest news in Norway

Country Profile: Norway 

Adopting from Norway

Adopsjonsforum: A Norwegian child welfare association, whose main activity is finding adoptive families in Norway for orphaned and abandoned children from other countries.

Five children seized by Norwegian gov’t to be adopted out, as protests grow

“Norway’s Barnevernet, or child welfare service, has begun the process of adopting out the five Bodnariu children it seized from their Pentecostal parents Marius and Ruth in November, according to the children’s uncle, Daniel Bodnariu.”

Towards the Thaw: Seeking Clarity in China-Norway Relations

“It has now been over five years since political relations between China and Norway were downgraded after the awarding of the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize to Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo. The extent of this political deadlock is by now unprecedented in the recent diplomatic history of the two countries. This situation has allowed for some salient insights to be drawn on Chinese foreign policy, based on the aspects where the Sino-Norwegian case is similar to or different from other instances of diplomatic pressure from Beijing. Analyzing current Sino-Norwegian relations does, however, require a degree of precision, which has at times been lacking in media reports, in particular on two accounts.”

Norway to allow foreign women to abort healthy twin

Norway’s health authorities have ruled that foreign women pregnant with twins should be allowed to abort one fetus in Norwegian hospitals, even if it is perfectly healthy.”

Norway and China: A foreign relationship with a touch of magical reasile

“As a powerful nation justifiably proud of its venerable history and culture and with a role to play on the world stage, China has the capability to be much better than that.  It needs to escape a magical realist world of its own making and engage constructively with other nations that can help it.”

How do Chinese Students tackle their new life in Norway? 

“Many Chinese students come to Norway with big ambitions. But everyday life can be hard and lonely. Some find solace in religion.”

Thank you to MBL volunteer Patrick Chen for his contribution to this post. 

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Happy Thanksgiving from MBL volunteers

Though Thanksgiving is an American tradition, we feel it’s a good time to remind ourselves how important it is to care for each other and to be grateful for what we have.

Happy Thanksgiving! Here are messages from some MBL volunteers.

Julie: 

I’ve been with MBL for 13 years. It’s precious when we work together and support each other. I will keep all the beautiful memory in my heart forever. I’m so proud to be one of the volunteers for MBL and I’m grateful to everyone I’ve met in my life. I feel happy because knowing YOU is the most beautiful thing! Many thanks to you for supporting MBL charity. Happy Thanksgiving!

Fan:

Happy Thanksgiving! This is my first year to be an official MBLer. It feels wonderful to be in such a warm family where sharing and helping each other are deeply valued. I’m moved by the many stories about adoptive families and adopted children, and every project MBL has done for underprivileged children in China inspires me. Thank you, MBL, and thank you, our hardworking and talented volunteers all over the world! Thank you, all the friends and supporters of MBL. Thinking of you makes me smile.

Patrick:

Some friendships become more beautiful over time. Thank you for the color you add to my life! I wish you a heartfelt Thanksgiving.

Ding Ding: 

I am blessed to be part of MBL. MBL teaches me to bridge gaps and connect hearts. It seems difficult, but is worth an effort and certainly achievable for anyone who holds such a wish. Wish MBLers around the world can bridge more gaps and unite more hearts and souls. Love you all!

Chloe:

Thanks for those people who inspire me and challenge me to grow. We met in our life for a reason, which is that we all learn from each other.

Jieqiong:

A lot of things happened to me this year, some are good some are bad. I am so blessed that every time when I am happy or sad, I have the MBL family to share with. This warm family teaches me love and how to embrace frustrations with hope and peace. Thank you MBL family~! I love you all~!

Thibault:

在川普上任之后,我们都必需努力争取我们的权利、未来和自由,因为这个世界将到处充斥着模糊的仇恨和暴力

Ying:

Thanks to the MBL – the big family, who has brought us together for a good cause, through which I have met many wonderful people and spent my time meaningfully. Here is to a harvest of blessing to the MBL, you are the epitome of loving people and for that we are eternally grateful. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

A big thank you to our volunteer Gloria in China, who recently joined MBL, for the beautiful poster. 

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Latest news and discussions in Canada

CULTURAL EXCHANGES BETWEEN CANADA AND CHINA

1.Can4 Culture

“Canada was featured as the honoured guest country at the annual Meet in Beijing Arts Festival from 25th April until 21st May 2016. The festival showcases a diverse range of international and Chinese arts and cultures programs staged at venues across Beijing. This year it featured a variety of Canadian performers including The Ottawa Bach Choir, Chan Hong Goh, Buzz Brass, and Dashan.”

2.Canada China Culture Exchange Association——-A little outdated – the last event was in 2010

The Canada China Culture Exchange Association (CCCEA) is a non-profit organisation incorporated in Ontario that is promoting the culture exchange between Canada and China. Our mission is to strengthen the culture exchange between Canada and China, to promote the Canadian multiculturalism, and to enrich the cultural life of Canadian Chinese.

ADOPTION RELATED NEWS AND STORIES

1.The Children’s Bridge – International Adoption Consultants

The Children’s Bridge is a non-profit, federally incorporated organization licensed in Ontario to facilitate adoptions. Created in the early 1990’s, The Children’s Bridge helps families across Canada who wish to adopt.

2.ABBA Canada – Financial Solutions for Adoptions

There are more than 20 million children worldwide that are waiting to be adopted. In Canada alone, there are over 30,000 children waiting for forever families. Throughout North America, thousands of private adoptions (those with birth parent involvement) occur on a yearly basis.

3.Adoption Statistics (Taken from Citizenship and Immigration Canada)

4.Families with Children from China (FCC)

5.Legal Adoption Procedure

News Articles

1.Canada and China Will Enter Trade Talks, Justin Trudeau Says

OTTAWA — Canada and China will begin talks that may lead to a free-trade agreement, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday.

The announcement was the latest of Mr. Trudeau’s sometimes contentious efforts to develop stronger ties with China. It came during a news conference with Premier Li Keqiang of China, who is on a four-day visit. This month, Mr. Trudeau’s government said with little fanfare that it was negotiating an extradition treaty with China, a country with a dubious human rights record and sometimes questionable legal processes.

2.China, Canada firms sign 56 deals worth more than $1.2B

Chinese and Canadian firms signed 56 deals worth more than $1.2 billion at a ceremony on Thursday, Canadian Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland said in Shanghai.

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