Art by children with neurodiversity showcased at coffee festival
Children with neurodiversity showcased their imagination and talent in art at the ongoing 7th Lujiazui Coffee Festival on Friday.
By participating in the "Inclusive Space" charity project initiated by Shanghai Daily and City News Service, they drew their dreams, impressions and love for the city of Shanghai with both local and foreign volunteers.
This heartwarming event is also an answer to the World Autism Awareness Day on Sunday and is a partnership with ELG, one of the first special education training institutions in China.
Alison Joy, an overseas student at Shanghai University, is one of the volunteers of City News Service. Joy, from Kenya, painted "I Love Shanghai" on a recycled bag with teenager An An. They also drew the image of the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, a distinctive landmark of the city.
"These children are very talented," Joy said. "It's an interesting and meaningful experience for me. The cooperation shows that we both love Shanghai."
She has lived and studied in the city for around four months. Amazed at the city's skyscrapers and culture, Joy has told many vivid stories about the city to her parents and friends in Kenya. Her parents are also planning a trip to the city.
Volunteer Zhan Lin, a local office worker, cooperated with 14-year-old Di Di on three different paintings. She was amazed at the great ideas and imagination of the child.
"For me, it is a rare opportunity to listen to their hearts and explore the fun of painting many years after my school days," said Zhan.
Zhan was also impressed with the great patience of teachers from ELG, adding that she is very willing to sign up for more charitable events of City News Service.
Di Di said he had a lot of fun painting images of rabbits, flowers and Shanghai's architecture. "The rabbit drawing is my favorite," he said.
City News Service is the exclusive media sponsor for ELG. These children's artworks were also showcased for visitors to the coffee festival. By far, City News Service has a total of 102 volunteers, and many of them are expats. Since its launch in August, "Inclusive Space" has offered vocational training, internships and new positions for many students with neurodiversity.