Teaching students well
Xiao Bing, the founder Xiamen Animal Protection Society (XAPS) attended ACTAsia’s workshop in 2007. He asked our support for his plan to focus on lobbying and education. XAPS has a strong relationship with the Municipal Education Department and Propaganda Department. The support from these two departments is the key factor that allows XAPS to enter schools to promote humane education.
We have provided funding to conduct a humane education programme for students of universities/colleges in Xiamen. The programme included talks, an essay competition, and information displays on animal sentience and kindness to companion animals. The programme has been endorsed by the Department of Education of Xiamen Municipality. We have created a leaflet on animal sentience for him to hand out at universities and colleges.
“Caring for animals starts with me”
In the second half of 2008, the first University Student Essay Competition was held by XAPS in collaboration with the Communist Youth Group of Xiamen City Committee, Xiamen City Bureau of Education, and Xiamen City Student Union.
The competition, entitled “Caring for animals starts with me”, received an impressive 324 entries from six colleges and universities in Xiamen. After several rounds of careful judging, 29 students and one outstanding supervising teacher were selected as prize winners. The champion of the competition was Jia Zhen, with the essay “The same beating hearts”. A ceremony was held to honour the winners, and Xiamen TV Station and Xiamen Daily attended the event and reported on the competition.
A survey of 300 participating students showed that the essay competition was very well received, and had helped them to become more aware of the concept of animal sentience and the intrinsic value of animals. The director of the Xiamen City Bureau of Education appreciated the work done by XAPS, and this programme has helped them to build their relationship with the local government.