User profile: chris

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Forums > Living in Kunming > Seeking small Chinese non-profit organisations

Hi kate008,

Yesterday I visited the Ringa Community Nursery (仁安幼儿园) near Shangri-la and think it might be of interest to you, or other readers for that matter.

This school for children from the six villages in the Ringa Valley is educating more than 90 children aged 4 through 6, teaching them to speak and write Mandarin Chinese, which will allow them to attend public school after the age of 6. Prior to this, most children in the Ringa Valley were unable to attend public school because they lacked the necessary Mandarin Chinese skills.

The nursery also teaches literacy in the children's native Tibetan, which helps them stay in touch with their own culture. Tibetan literacy classes are taught by local volunteers who work at the nearby Banyan Tree Ringha.

The nursery is hoping to add English courses next year, but is in need of funds.

Most young children in the villages around the Ringa Valley are raised by their grandparents because their parents are off working. The grandparents are often unable to look after the children, who frequently play in the road and engage in other innocent enough but dangerous play habits.

The Ringa Community Nursery provides a safe place for the children to play, as well as previously unimaginable education opportunities. It also teaches the children basic hygiene and health knowledge and provides one hot bath a week, something most of the kids don't have access to in their own homes.

I was quite impressed by the dedication of the two volunteer teachers at the nursery, one a Naxi girl from Lijiang, the other a Han girl from Zhejiang. Aside from a few Banyan Tree employees, the children were the only locals I encountered in the valley that could speak Chinese. Nobody from the valley has ever graduated from university before, but I could sense that some of the giggling kids I met at the nursery would change that.

For more information about the Ringa Community Nursery, check their bilingual website at

For information about how to donate to the nursery, go to


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Nice work Ben. I've wondered about this area every time I've taken the train from Kunming to Guangzhou. I always keep my eyes open around 5:30 or 6 to make sure to catch a few seconds of the remarkably tall waterfalls on the east side as they catch the late afternoon sun... some of my favorite scenery in southwest China. Will go there next time I'm passing through - thanks for scoping it out first!

Last saw them at the Speakeasy in 2008, one of the more memorable performances I saw there. I hear they're still a very good show.

Best one for me was in the old airport in the late 90s: "Warmly welcome foreign fiends"



Four stars for a great restaurant with friendly staff.

I give Tusheng Shiguan a fifth star for its goal of promoting environmentally sound food production.


My favorite Tengchong-style restaurant in Kunming. Their ersi and erkuai are trucked over from Tengchong and are the real deal — Kunming ersi and erkuai do not compare.

The restaurant itself is a bit jumbled, but there are a couple of tables outside in the courtyard that are nice to sit at when the weather's pleasant.

Don't believe them when they say they don't have lufu.


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The Bircher muesli is probably the healthiest and most delicious breakfast around.

Pound for pound, one of the best little Western restaurants in China. 佳佳万岁


Just had gnocchi in mushroom sauce and a glass of wine for dinner on the balcony in mid-January. Awesome.