Reflections from a Volunteer Experience
Matthew 28:19 - Go therefore and make disciples in all nations, baptizing then in the name
of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
During a recent trip to China I had the opportunity to volunteer at Agape Family House. The bible verse (listed above) reflects the ministry of Agape Family House and their care for orphans in China who have a condition called Osteogenesis Imperfecta; more commonly known as OI or brittle bones disease. In addition to providing a home and family environment, Agape House raises funds and provides the wheelchairs, walkers, physical therapy and surgeries for the children.
The staff at Agape House works with many orphanages all over China to receive referrals of children so that they can live in this foster care placement and receive specialized care. Some children have paperwork prepared for adoption, while others many never have the opportunity to be adopted. Through the “Bread of Life Bakery,” Agape Home provides long term opportunities for the young adults who can learn job skills, earn money and live independently in apartments.
As a volunteer I spent time with the children participating in a variety of activities. In the mornings the older children and I would work on some math and English lessons. In the afternoons we would brave the winter weather and take walks in the neighborhood. We spent many hours playing cards and making crafts. All of the older children receive piano lessons from a volunteer, so many afternoons the home was filled with the sounds of children practicing piano music. As I visited over the Chinese New Year holiday, we were able to take a field trip to the local hospital to see a fireworks show!
The ministry is supervised by an American family who started the home and is living in China as they work alongside Chinese staff to build relationships with the community and advocate for these children. To find out more about these children, their stories and the ministry of Agape House you can go to their webpage: http://agapefamilyhouse.com/
Assistant Asia Program Director