One exciting aspect of living in Beijing is the city’s lively volunteering scene. Last year, we dedicated an issue to celebrating the leaders and unsung heroes of Beijing’s global community, while our sister magazine the Beijinger, committed their recent Jan-Feb 2018 issue to helping you find the goodwill in the city we all love.
Indeed, there’s no shortage of volunteering opportunities in Beijing. One of the most active non-profit volunteer organizations in the city is the Migrant Children’s Foundation (MCF), which not only supports migrant kids but also offers a space for personal growth and developing a passion for charity to many young expats and families in Beijing.
Last year, MCF held their biggest annual fundraiser, Murder Mystery, with a theme of “Oscars,” where they raised RMB 36,000 for the medical check-up for 72 migrant children. Now MCF has stepped up its Murder Mystery event, now in its eighth year, with an even more exciting theme, “Beijing’s Got Talent!” We caught up with Lorna Snuggs, MCF’s curriculum coordinator and one of the organizers, to find out more about the event.
BJK: I was present at last year’s event and I thought it was awesome! This year, the theme is “Beijing’s Got Talent”, and it sounds very much as intriguing and exciting as the series itself! How did you come up with this theme?
Snuggs: It was actually a suggestion we had last year from David, a member of our events team, but we decided to go with the Oscars and their attendant glamor. However, this year we wanted to be different and go with something more contemporary, more diverse and with a sense of fun. It’s been more of a challenge, but I think we’ve achieved it! The ‘Beijing’s Got Talent’ theme really allows us to celebrate all the performing arts, from singers and rappers to fire eaters and clowns, and a lot of the fun on the night is based on these wide-ranging talents but with a dash of that Simon Cowell humor!
Murder Mystery is perhaps MCF’s biggest event of the year, and it involves a lot of people, for sure. Is this your first partnership with Beijing World Youth Academy (BWYA)? How are the student performers preparing for this event?
We’ve actually been working with BWYA for a couple of years now as their students have set up an MCF Kids’ Club, and they come to an MCF school every week to teach children a range of subjects. They’ve done such a fantastic job at this that when we were looking for a school to perform, I immediately approached them. And they’ve been amazing! They have been exactly what we’re looking for in a group – organized and very creative! They’ve got great ideas and they’ve really worked hard to think about all angles and see what new ideas they can come up with. I’m super impressed.
MCF raised RMB 36,000 for the health checkups of 72 migrant kids during the most recent Murder Mystery. How many kids are you targeting to support this year?
Last year’s total was a great achievement and obviously, the goal is to help as many as possible. But to top last year’s amount and be able, with the support of Globalcare, to take even more children for comprehensive health checks would mean so much to us and the schools we work with. We’ve also just started working with four new schools too, so there are another 1,200 children we’d like to be able to give health checks to.
Are there any ways people can support MCF’s activities?
Absolutely! We are a completely volunteer-run organization, so we’re always looking for new people with diverse skills who can work with us, be it teaching, coordinating events, doing crafts, or helping with marketing. We also work with businesses and groups around Beijing to provide CSR [Corporate Social Responsibility] opportunities as well as event sponsorship, such as St. James’s Place Wealth Management is doing with this year’s Murder Mystery. Furthermore, schools can get help with students’ CAS [Creativity, Activity, Service] requirements [for International Baccalaureate]by setting up MCF Kids’ Clubs, enabling their students to get real, hands-on and valuable CAS experiences. For more information, visit our website (mcfchina.org) or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Other than these, come to our events, follow our work and support us by promoting what we do.
MCF & Globalcare’s “Beijing’s Got Talent”, Apr 21
Adults. MCF teams up with Beijing World Youth Academy (BWYA) for an evening of great food, drink, company, and a mystery murder for us all to solve. The annual Murder Mystery fundraiser this year has a theme of “Beijing’s Got Talent,” and all proceeds will go to MCF’s projects to help support the health check-up of migrant children in Beijing. RMB 500 per ticket, inclusive of a four-course dinner with a glass of complimentary wine. 7pm. Hilton Hotel Liangmaqiao. Scan the QR code in the poster above or visit this page for more information about the tickets. MCF.
Photos: Courtesy of Lorna Snuggs and MCF