Recycling Center in Kunshan, China

Tuesday, 25 May 2010 15:36 Tzu Chi Foundation
Kunshan is a booming industrial town in east China that has attracted a great deal of foreign investors, many from Taiwan. Tzu Chi volunteers have set up two recycling points in Kunshan.

Kunshan is a city of 650,000 people, between Suzhou and Shanghai. It is one of the richest cities in China and home to many high-technology companies. The volunteers have just established the city’s second recycling centre, in Yangguang Kuncheng, a community of more than 5,000 residents.  It takes conviction and patience for the volunteers to persuade the residents to come to the centre; it starts with a friendship between them and the individual. People then invite their friends to come with them and participate; the volunteers pass their directness and passion to the participants.

"Nothing is useless,” said volunteer Wei Lijuan. “Some items are mistakenly seen as waste. We take them and put them to use and, in so doing, help to save the planet.” Recycled material can, with creativity, be turned into useful objects. Recycling is also a good spiritual exercise, as was discovered by one old lady whose son is handicapped.  “He is constantly ridiculed,” she said. “But here the volunteers never make fun of him or call him names. They are so sincere. I am very grateful. I may not have money but will do what I can to repay the love I have received.”

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