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Child Friendly Spaces for disaster city
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The May 12 earthquake destroyed the Guangyuan city office of global charity World Vision. But the eight local staff relocated to a tent and continued their work. Guangyuan was one of the areas worst hit by the 8.0 level quake, with 2,586 killed and 21,682 injured.

World Vision is now planning major new initiatives in Guangyuan, including setting up Child Friendly Spaces to help children and young people recover from shock and trauma.

A China.org.cn reporter spoke by telephone to Meimei Leung of World Vision in Chengdu airport shortly after she flew in from Beijing with a team of child specialists.

Ms Leung said that she and the child specialists will reach Guangyuan city in the next two days and will immediately being work on an initial Child Friendly Centre (CFS). They eventually plan to establish 10 CFS in the area. The CFS will be places where children can play, chat and socialize and begin the process of healing and recovery from the trauma of the quake. Each CFS will cater for around 100 children, who will attend at different times and in different age groups.

World Vision will also assist with children's educational needs by working in partnership with between 15 and 20 local schools to set up 200 temporary classrooms in tents.

The 200 tents are part of a shipment of general relief supplies including 1,200 tents, with 33,000 quilts and 6,000 tarpaulins that World Vision will deliver to the disaster area over the next two weeks. The shipment will include 1,000 special child-friendly relief kits.

Ms Leung also told China.org.cn that World Vision will be flying in assessment teams over the next fortnight to carry out a detailed survey of the area's needs to assist the charity in planning its future work.

(China.org.cn by John Sexton, May 23, 2008)

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