Kate, my friend and classmate at the Chinese course, (si si, next to the Old People’s Uni and the Pigeon Ice Cream Parlour, remember?) got this charity fair organized last Tuesday. I must admit the venue was just as awesome as the project itself. We got together at this 4-storey semi-detached lane house in the centre of Shanghai that belongs to one family. First floor kitchen and sitting room, second floor DVD room, third and fourth probably bedrooms I imagine but I didn’t want to invade their privacy and peek upstairs. The wooden beams, the old furniture and the omnipresence of narrow landings reminded me of my times in England. Perhaps I’d have found a wooden duck on a mantelpiece, too if I had ventured to the upper floors!
But I got carried away. More importantly, about the more obscure lane houses in Shanghai. A Christian community in Shanghai supports this program, called Eden Ministry, to help women escape prostitution and sex trafficking. They did not choose to become prostitutes. Had either been drugged and kidnapped or are so poor they had no other choice. By teaching them skills, i.e. making jewelry, gives them an opportunity to find a job and break out from this circle.
I took a picture of the jewelry we bought where their short story reads.
Money raised: 7,620 RMB
Feeling proud of Kate: 10 points
Sudden rush of Happiness: 10 points
Edwardian athmosphere: 10 points
Cheesecake and other snacks nibbled while picking out jewelry: 10 points (plus 2 inches tops on my love-handles)
Seeing Dan, my Buddhist Chinese boyfriend, cheerfully singing along the Jesus songs: 10 points