Hearts and Hands

The Deaf Population of China, numbering around 72 million and with their own language and cultural identity, could be classed as China’s largest minority people group. They exist in every city, every township and thousands of small villages.

The majority of Deaf young people do not find suitable employment and turn to Deaf-led gangs in the large cities for a sense of belonging. Their means of living comes from petty theft or worse, from drug trade and prostitution.

It was with this in mind that Hearts and Hands began its work in 2000, first as a training class in patchwork and quilting for young Deaf, then as a small handcraft business employing young Deaf people who would otherwise struggle to make a living. Currently we have over 40 workers with hope for greater expansion in the future.

The Hearts & Hands workers are all deaf or disabled, learning useful life skills in a friendly working environment. Our hope in providing this environment is to help them realize “plans that will prosper and not harm them, plans for a hope and a future.”  Heavenly Treasures was able to begin working with H&H in 2009 by purchasing handbags, stuffed bunnies, wallets and other cute hand sewn Christmas items. Since then, their lines have expanded and grown. Currently, H&H has 28 staff in the handicraft workshop and store. The woodcraft shop has 7 carpenters.

Meet Hu Xiaoping...what a miracle!

Hu Xiao PingXiaoping was born in a Lisu family in Baoshan, Yunnan. Her father is deaf. Her mother ran away with her younger brother when Xiao Ping was 4. She was brought up by her great aunt, a devout Christian.

When she was 15, she fell from a height of 2 meters high and damaged her spine. Without good treatment, the problem quickly worsened. Before she knew it, she couldn’t walk anymore. She stayed in bed for 5 years and wondered what God’s plan was for her.

In 2006, a sister from Bless China International (BCI) visited her hometown and heard about her. In 2007 she was brought to the BCI clinic for treatment. However, the doctor couldn’t do anything. She was hospitalized for a month and sent home to wait for death.

When she got home, she started to get better. On Nov. 11th, she said she heard God tell her it was time for her to walk again. She got up and took her first step in 6 years. After that she learned how to walk again. Everyone who knows her knows it was a miracle.

Xiaoping joined Hearts & Hands in the fall of 2008 shortly after her marriage with a BCI worker who helped her and encouraged her when she was sick. First she was working in the handicraft workshop and then she was transferred to the H&H store. She is very interested in the work and very quick to learn new skills. She only has a 6th grade education yet she can use a computer very well now. She is also learning English and loves that. She said she never imagined that she could do so many things and be so useful. She said she wants to work in H&H for the rest of her life. She knew God has a plan for her in H&H.

Meet Xiao Feng...
As a result of childhood illness, Xiao
Feng became hearing impaired. At that
time many girls from the countryside
did not receive education and with the
added complication of hearing impairment,
Xiao Feng was not educated at
all. Five years ago she attended Project
Grace’s Deaf Training Program where
she learned some new skills, added to
the beautiful embroidery skills she had
learned at home. She has become one of
Hearts and Hands’ most gifted workers.
As a single mother, she is now also able
to support her children in school and
having been isolated before, has become
a part of a close deaf community.

To hear more stories from this project, you can visit their website: heartsandhandschina.com