10 August 2016, 12:36PM
Recently, we saw a wonderful visit on site at our bear sanctuary in Chengdu from children who were part of the 'CBRC Helping the Poor Summer Camp'.
The visit was a joint programme organised by Animals Asia and Ming Ri Yang Guang Volunteer Organisation, where the kids joined a 5 day schedule enjoying unique sights and activities all around Chengdu. These campers consisted of 27 students from poor areas of Sichuan Province - including several from one-parent families, and some who are described as "left-behind" children, whose parents work far away from their hometowns.
The schedule ran from 6th to 10th August and saw the kids coming to visit the bears on the morning of the 9th, before joining one of our Professor Paws activities in the afternoon too.
Meeting the kids on site was marvelous as, bright-eyed excited and resplendent in their gifted Animals Asia t-shirts, they obviously couldn't wait to meet Aussie, Poppy and friends!
As Emily Zhu, in our PR and Education Department says:
"The campers arrived at the sanctuary around 10:45. After gathering in front of the welcome board, I briefly shared with them the work we are doing here and the three programmes that Animals Asia focuses on, as well as some basic safety rules to follow while visiting the bear areas. A quick chat with Jill, and a group photo all together, and then the itinerary and tour began!
The campers were divided into 2 groups. While one group rolled their sleeves up and made enrichment food items for the bears in the bear kitchen, the other group enjoyed a tour in the Education room. The group making the novel food and toys had a huge amount of fun and learned why this form of enrichment is so important for the bears and helps to keep them busy and happy all day long.
Over in the Education Room, the other group learned all about bear bile farming, where they had no idea of the practice before, and were updated on all of Animals Asia's work. All the kids felt sorry for the bears and their miserable lives on the farms - but were so glad that they were now with us in beautiful enclosures with their friends. These 2 groups then swapped before gathering together to tour around the bear enclosures.
The kids were excited to see the bears close up. Questions were fired at Emily and the team, and especially all about the toys they had helped to make, and about the core concept of animal welfare that Animals Asia promotes. By lunchtime the kids were ready to leave having enjoyed a thoroughly fabulous morning with the bears."
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