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Artists' passion shines through for the bears

Recently I posted some beautiful poems written in honour of the bears, but it not just poets who are inspired by our bears. Today I'd like to share some beautiful artworks that reflect so perfectly their creators' connection with the moon bears through their truly immeasurable talent and passion.

Our thanks from sanctuaries in China and Vietnam - and, of course, from our lucky bear residents - for so creatively spreading the word to help the bears they've left behind on the farms.

First a wonderful "Bear-a-thon created and promoted by teacher Maria Cristina Bazzotti and her students in Riccione, Italy where Maria Cristina explains in her own words....

On a bright Sunday morning – whilst a local TV and radio were broadcasting non-stop about the imprisonment of the Chinese moon bears on the bile farms – a crowd of more than 150 self motivated people gathered together (some of them with their pets) to show what cruelty can be. We started our dignified march in a high mood followed by some unexpected sympathisers joining us and loudly pronouncing the motto "Save the moon bears". I was so excited (all of us actually) that I realized how many we were just when I turned my head back: a multitude of determined children wearing white T-shirts with a bear black paw hand printed on each one of them: "Save the moon bears - Bear-a-thon Riccione 2010 for AAF". We ended up in a lovely square with a big fountain in Piazzale Roma to take snaps, hand candies out to everyone, make a lot of speeches, explaining, dancing and singing for the moon bears.

We do like to think that our songs and hymns devoted to the bears could reach their solitude and pain as a promise of a future liberation...It's said that the universe came out from the creative Will, carried by a sound: We do hope our sound could reach the sense of compassion and mercy of the Ones who have got the power to change things.

This event gave children a sense of personal-growth, of commitment and empathy that humbled me a great deal. A great success to us teachers. An event should be nice to repeat next year on a larger scale. But the photos speak better than my words...

And from Nicky in our UK office who writes about a marvelous East meets West competition which joined school children from China and the UK eagerly together to help the bears. (This truly beautiful art from both events will be displayed along the walkway of one of our bear houses in Chengdu – much to the delight of visitors and bears alike!) 

Forty-five children from Years 5 and 6 from Hermitage Junior School in Surrey were the pioneers in the first joint venture with pupils from Jinguan Yi Primary School in China. They were all invited to take part in a writing or painting competition designed to highlight the plight of the moon bears. The top 20 entries from each school were taken to our Chengdu sanctuary, where Jill judged their entries.

Jill had a fantastic afternoon looking at each and every entry, but had a much harder task in selecting the winners. Eventually, she selected the winners – Rebecca Littlefield, Lily Assinder, Bailey Elen-Coghlan, Shruti Attard and Benedex Horvarth from Hermitage School and Zhong Ping, Chen Xueke, Sheng Xinyi, Li Zeyu and Huang Niwei from Jinguan Yin primary school. Their fabulous artworks are on display at our moon bear sanctuary education centre. There they provide an impressive display for all visitors, emphasising the global concern amongst even young children for the moon bears and their desire to see bear bile farming ended forever.

And just recently, Melbourne supporters Nicole and Siggi returned to Chengdu, where Nicole saw through her previous promise to the bears – to paint them. Nicole’s art is well known in Melbourne and now in other states of Australia following our recent Roadshow. Nicole generously offered some of her beautiful pieces for our silent auctions across the country. It was a pleasure to see them both on site again and to see the results of Nicole’s truly creative talent – now gracing the side of House 2 for staff and visitors to enjoy.

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