2013-02-16 New Year greetings from Master Hui Li
The year 2012, which was marked by uncertainty and instability, is now behind us. As the world continues to change at a rapid pace, Africa is no exception - travelling frequently between Africa and the East has helped me recognise the massive economic growth in Africa – underpinned by capitalism – and its impact on the environment, society and human behaviour.
As these changes evolve, Africans continue to adapt themselves in order to survive. Nonetheless this reactive adaptation to change will not truly promote prosperity on the African continent, as more people are now drawn into the vicious cycle of fulfilling materialistic needs which ultimately lead to the loss of certain values and innocence.
This is exactly the reason why Amitofo Care Centre (ACC) dedicates its effort on meeting basic needs (such as food and shelter) and also providing quality education, as we believe that education is the key to real prosperity and sustainability in Africa.
I believe that the real treasure of Africa is its children, and the prosperity of Africa will largely depend on how much of their awareness and potential are realised. Hence we are providing our kids with an environment to learn and grow - an environment that is safe and sound. We also established schools next to the care centre so that we can provide them with quality education. In this regard, the school’s syllabus is aligned to the education standard of the country and covers subjects such as history, geography, language, maths, life orientation, health, science, agriculture and extracurricular activities - but what makes us unique is that we teach Chinese at our schools.
In addition to education we also see cultural preservation as one of our top responsibilities, especially in this fast changing world, hence the activities at the centre always include a strong focus on African culture. This ensures that the kids preserve their heritage and learn from the wisdom of their own culture, which is then complemented by the principles and ethics from the Chinese culture which they also need to learn.
This year marks the 8th anniversary of ACC, which also means that some of our kids are becoming grown-ups. We are particularly pleased to see that the first batch of kids we adopted is becoming youngsters who are bright, disciplined and courteous. The highlight for me is probably their achievement at the Chinese Proficiency Competition for Foreign College Students in 2012, where they confidently presented themselves and showcased their talent and potential.
ACC is just one example of how Africa can be transformed into a pureland of our world. Through acceptance and education, the ACC kids have not only absorbed the wisdom of their own heritage but also the principles and ethics of the Chinese culture – particularly the concept of Karma from the Buddhist teachings.
That said, we cannot claim all the credits – this is an effort of all those who are promoting real prosperity on the African continent. Let us continue to keep this lamp shining, so that more children in African can see hope in their future and promote prosperity through wisdom and learning.
In closing, I wish you all peace and auspiciousness in the New Year. May you achieve both wisdom and merits in life.
Yours in Dharma