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She left her heart behind in Tanzania

By Zhang Xiaomin in Dalian  (China Daily)

09:32, January 09, 2013

Cao Jingyi with a child at the New Hope Family orphanage in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. (Photos /China Daily)

At the beginning of 2012, a volunteer project transported Cao Jingyi from China to Tanzania, where she made friends with dozens of orphans.

The experience touched her so much that when she returned home, the senior Dalian Maritime University student raised about 13,000 yuan ($2,100) to improve the children's living conditions.

"The kids made my trip to Tanzania more meaningful and unforgettable," she says of the New Hope Family orphanage in the country's capital Dar es Salaam.

Cao and another 11 Chinese students went to the African city with AIESEC, or the Association Internationale des Etudiants en Sciences Economiques et Commerciales, one of the world's largest student-run organizations. There were also student participants from other countries.

They spent six weeks publicizing information about HIV/AIDS prevention in the city.

On weekends, they volunteered at the orphanage, which is about 10 minutes from where they stayed.

The building is a dilapidated gray bungalow with a yard. There is also a small piece of land to grow vegetables and flowers. Inside, there is only one table, two chairs, 20 bunk beds and one old TV set. A small room was turned into the classroom - with only a blackboard and without desks or chairs.

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