TFboys’ mem­ber talks about time as UNICEF ad­vo­cate for ed­u­ca­tion

Global Times - - Life - By Huang Tingt­ing

Chi­nese pop singer and ac­tor Wang Yuan, a mem­ber of the highly pop­u­lar Chi­nese boy band TFboys, talked about his ex­pe­ri­ences as UNICEF Special Ad­vo­cate for Ed­u­ca­tion and vis­it­ing schools in some of China’s ru­ral ar­eas at a press con­fer­ence in Bei­jing on Mon­day.

“I al­ways thought that most ru­ral schools have run-down class­rooms and out­dated fa­cil­i­ties, but to my sur­prise the two schools I vis­ited were mod­ern­ized and pro­vided a beau­ti­ful school en­vi­ron­ment for ed­u­ca­tion,” Wang said at the press con­fer­ence.

The 17-year-old star vis­ited two Child-Friendly schools in San­jiang county, South China’s Guangxi Zhuang Au­ton­o­mous Re­gion, in Septem­ber af­ter he was ap­pointed by UNICEF as its Special Ad­vo­cate for Ed­u­ca­tion in June.

Child-Friendly schools are part of a pi­lot project that was launched by China’s Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion and UNICEF in 2001. The project aims to im­prove the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion for chil­dren aged 6-12 by im­prov­ing schools’ phys­i­cal, so­cial and emo­tional ed­u­ca­tion.

Af­ter spend­ing a day at the two schools at­tend­ing classes with stu­dents, teach­ing them mu­sic lessons and play­ing bas­ket­ball with them, Wang said that he feels the pro­gram “has re­ally helped.”

“China has rec­og­nized the value of the Child-Friendly School model so we hope to see this ap­proach repli­cated across the coun­try,” said Rana Flow­ers, UNICEF rep­re­sen­ta­tive to China, at the press con­fer­ence.

Flow­ers also ex­plained why UNICEF chose Wang as their special en­voy.

“He has ex­pressed such a pas­sion and con­cern for qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion and be­ing a voice for chil­dren’s ed­u­ca­tion that we de­cided to co­op­er­ate with him,” she said.

Wang has risen as an ac­tive voice for China’s young gen­er­a­tion.

TIME mag­a­zine re­cently in­cluded him on its 30 Most In­flu­en­tial Teens of 2017 list along with David Beck­ham’s son Brook­lyn Beck­ham and Game of Thrones ac­tor Isaac Hemp­stead Wright.

Wang Yuan of TFboys plays bas­ket­ball with stu­dents at a lo­cal pri­mary school in San­jiang county, South China’s Guangxi Zhuang Au­ton­o­mous Re­gion.

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