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Learning by helping

By Zhang Zefeng | China Daily | Updated: 2017-01-25 06:56

Learning by helping

Chinese college students volunteer to teach at a kindergarten in the old town of Galle, Sri Lanka, organized by Ciweishixi. [Photo provided to China Daily]

This past summer, when most Chinese college students were dazzled by choices of holiday plans, Wang Chaodi jumped into one of the hottest travel trends, "voluntourism" for an unconventional holiday.

The Yunnan University junior spent three weeks immersed in African culture while participating in community service in Nairobi, Kenya.

"I want to go to the farthest end of the Earth to help people who are most in need," says the 22-year-old law student.

On weekdays, he taught elementary courses at an impoverished inner-city orphanage-a 300-square-meter space packed with houses, a feedlot and a ragged teaching shed-where "skinny students", as Wang puts it, have only a single outdated textbook to study from.

During weekends, Wang went on a safari to tourist sites including Masai Mara National Reserve and Amboseli Park, where he could observe exotic animals.

"Voluntourism", also known as volunteer tourism, combines volunteer work with travel. A global phenomenon, it is gaining momentum among young Chinese, especially college students.

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