My Son And I

In Free Lunch

That year when he was five

Author | Yuanyuan Li

Edit | Qin Liu


My Volunteer fellow: my son—Rice Ball(Tangyuan)

  The first time Rice Ball participated in a Free Lunch Activity was when Huang Xi Primary School began to enjoy the Free Lunch service. On 24th,October,2013, Huang Xi Primary School has become the first Free Lunch school in Fuzhou, Jiangxi Province. As a mother, when I was with the pupils in Huang Xi Primary School, I felt warm but my heart was ached at the same time. My son is lucky because he lives in the city and doesn’t have to suffer poverty as the children in rural area do. I encourage people to engage into “ Empty The Plates”activity. Rice Ball has done a remarkable job in the activity.

Rice Ball’s1433080826628396.jpg
1433080807378617.jpg“Empty Plates”

After we backed home, my son said we should never ever waste any food again, because the food we wasted could have feed so many children. Rice Ball was five years old at that time and he had never suffered from hunger. However, on the first day Huang Xi Primary School began to enjoy Free Lunch, Rice Ball saw a lot of peers suffering from hunger. Those peers have to walk a long way without their parents. Some of them even have to walk in the mountain for one hour to get to school. Most of them can’t make home for lunch, so they have some snack to substitute lunch. My son has been persisting in “emptying plates”. When he was five and in kindergarten, he was praised by his teachers for the long persistence in the “Empty Plates”activity.


(This is an article my son wrote when he was eight and in first grade. Jiangxi Free Lunch Volunteer Group had been established for three years and registered as Sunshine Public Service Center. The group has gained legal identify and its group member has enlarged dramatically. That year, we applied so many resources. We sent the clothes and books to countless Free Lunch schools.)

   The article narrated what happened when we first send the goods to Free Lunch schools. My son’s teacher knew that he always participate public service with me, so the teacher asked him to write an article about the public service experience to take part in a story-telling contest. That was why my son wrote the article. When my son wanted to write the words he didn’t know, I was there to teach him. I am so proud of my son that he can bring his experience to the school life.


( Our family-- three public service workers)

There are three Volunteer Certificate like this in our family. My husband is very supportive when my son engages into public service, even though he is often so busy that he doesn’t have so much spare time as we do to join in volunteer work at the front line. For me, the Volunteer Certificate is like a medal and an incentive. Whenever I open the certificate and see my son’s name on it, I feel grateful that Free Lunch provides such a wonderful chance for me and my son to give love and care for the children in need.


My Free Lunch Guide: YongJun Wu

The chubby person is Yongju Wu. His smile is cute and the stories he writes are funny to read.He’s the person in charge of our Jiangxi Free Lunch Volunteer Group. We are so closed that we all called him “Sukee”. The development of Free Lunch is twisted and turned like his curly hair; the expansion of Free Lunch in Jiangxi is going up like his waist.


From September,2011, Free Lunch was first introduced to a school in Jiangxi. Till now, there have been 28 primary schools that have enjoyed the Free Lunch service. Sukee’s contribution is undeniable. His job is a journalist in Jiangxi TV Station. When he first threw himself into public service, his colleagues didn’t understand why he did so. As time went by, he found the niche where public service and media can both fit in. He wrote stories and news from his public service experience. Since then, The TV Station has begun to support his engagement into public service. From the support, he has more chance to lead more volunteer work and bring us more public service experience. His justice and persistence make me respect him.

The reason why I first participated in Free Lunch was  Sukee’s charisma. He stepped up and reported so much truth when other journalists would stay clear of reporting the truth because they didn’t want to get themselves into any trouble. So when he asked me to join Free Lunch, I accepted the invitation right away and I became the specify volunteer of Huang Xi Primary School. As time flies, even though I’m no longer the specify volunteer of that school now, I still remember all the things we have gone through that time.


Preparation for opening ceremony in Shuang Xi Primary School with Fei Deng

Visiting Xin Tian Primary School with Yongjun Wu, the charged person of Free Lunch Volunteer Group

Bless the Free Lunch Fund

In the fourth anniversary of Free Lunch, I have been with it for two years. Thank you for the lovely moment that Sunshine Public Service Group shared with my son and me. I have a similar wish as all the ordinary mothers do: I hope my son will become a person with the capable of being loved and loving. Thanks so much for Free Lunch. It provides my son and me amazing chances to engage into public service. Bless Free Lunch!