After a restful winter break, ELG’s full-time program is back!
Before the children and young adults returned, our program team had two days of training, team building, and preparation. Led by their new director of programs, Julia Rose, with support from other ELG specialists as trainers, staff were energized, inspired, and educated.
One activity was particularly impactful.
Dozens of photos were spread over the Pudong Campus Movement Room. Images of animals, nature, architecture, and abstract photography decorated the walls.
Each staff member was asked to choose a photo or two to represent how they feel about the program, how they feel about their role within the program, or how they would like the program to be. Everyone told their colleagues the reason behind their choice, with all answers shared in English and Chinese.
Every single person’s choice and story was inspiring.
Senior program facilitator, Tiffany Liang, selected an image of a puzzle with a piece missing. It reminded her of a puzzle that she and her program children built up as an activity in the past: each time any child made a progress, they will pick a piece to hang on the wall to build up the picture together. She expressed that we value every step a child’s made. We can help the child to find the missing piece to help them develop better. And for the team, no matter how old you are, what gender you identify as, where you are from, which position in the team, we all an important piece of puzzle of the team.
Program leader Blair Tang chose a photo of fire in cold weather. She feels we can be the fire that provides warmth to families who are going through hard times.
Room assistant Wu chose a beautiful view that she described as refreshing and joyful. Looking at the view is like a gift and makes you feel grateful. This is how she feels about working with the children at ELG!
Chris Taylor, program facilitator in the life skills program, chose a blackboard full of children’s drawings. He liked that it seemed like the children had fun, looking almost like they went out of control or wild while creating their art. It reminded him what he was like when he was a teenager – sometimes following instructions but sometimes challenging them. He wants to encourage the young adults in the life skills program to have their own opinions, occasionally challenge ideas, and be more independent.