A real-life hero named Lily is a Chinese “mother” who has cared for more than 2,000 children over the past 12 years in Beijing.
Lu Lijing, also called Lily, set up a non-profit organization called “Dew Drops Little Flower” in 2006, in a bid to accommodate and look after more abandoned children born with innate diseases and disabilities.
“First, because it was, to me simple, no politics, I just worked with children. They smiled, they made you feel relaxed, no pressure. And then gradually, I wanted to learn more, and wanted to do more,” said Lily.
Lily describes her life as “meaningful and challenging” because of the 2,247 children she has cared for. But the memory of the painful battle of one little abandoned boy, who had short bowel syndrome, heart defects and many other conditions, still sticks out in her mind.
“On one side, it seemed impossible for him. There was too many things going on [with him]. But on the other side, he has the most cute, clear eyes, just looking at you. It seemed like [he was saying] “Help me!” So that was the very struggling part,” said Lily.
However, Lily never gave up on the now three-year-old boy called “Cam”. Today he lives a healthy life with his adopted parents in the United States.
Lily’s warm-warmheartedness has also touched many volunteers who have come to help her take care of the children.
“She’s invested so much in all of these children, and she is that mother figure. And I think also to us as a staff and a team, we all look up to her and even though she might not be our “mother,” as per say, we all kind of see her that way. And I think that Lily has lots of stories of children she has helped, and took care of them, took a chance on them. That’s what mothers do and that’s what Lily does over here with all of the kids,” said Rebekah Bodden, a volunteer.
Today “Dew Drops” has 75 children under its care and although Lily remains single without having children of her own, the over 2,000 children she has helped would say that Lily deserves a very special “Happy Mother’s Day”.
According to the Ministry of Civil Affairs in China by 2015, there were over 500,000 orphans in the country, and most of the abandoned children are born with medical issues and disabilities.