Behind Yufeng’s smile is a story of rare hardships and also precious optimism. She is the eldest of four children, born to farmers in rural Yunnan province. Yufeng’s mother was injured in a traffic accident and cannot perform much manual labor. Additionally, her parents provide care for Yufeng’s grandparents.
At the age of eight, Yufeng began suffering from a rare and serious bone infection in her leg. Doctors recommended amputation, but her parents refused the advice and spent most of their scarce income on medical treatment to spare her leg. Yufeng’s medical challenges continued when she was diagnosed with tuberculosis in 2011.
Yufeng shares, “Although my foot is disabled, I think my mind is important and I have a thankful heart.” She began High School in 2016, with the support of a CWEF scholarship, at the age of 23.
“My family is poor so I study harder than others. I want to change it. When I’m in trouble, I always face it bravely.”
Her strong spirit was tested again in 2018, when she underwent surgery on her leg to treat varicose veins, which caused her to repeat her second year of high school. Tragically, Yufeng underwent another surgery in 2019 to remove a portion of her lung, following a pulmonary infection.
In spite of everything she has been through, Yufeng has developed a wonderfully positive outlook on life.
“My life is full of sun. I will smile at everything. I think attitude is everything. I will never give up on my dream….in the future I want to become an English teacher.”
Yufeng wants to “change her frustration into wealth” and use the pain and difficulty she has experienced in the first part of her life to enrich her adult years.
Yufeng is grateful for the love and care that she received from CWEF, her teachers, classmates and others, many of whom fundraised online to help pay for her surgeries. She plans to graduate from High School in June 2020, at the age of 27. Without a doubt, her smile will continue to radiate hope and joy as she takes the next steps into pursuing her dream of becoming an English teacher.
Your generous contributions to this project make it possible for CWEF to continue to renew hope for young people like Yufeng who are facing the challenges of rural poverty. Thank you!