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Letter from Randy Long

Dear Ruth,

Dear Ruth,


I would first like to apologize for my actions. I know it was wrong of me to violate PEACH rules. I believe you have every reason to be cautious after last year, so I apologize if I have further violated your trust. Please give me the opportunity to explain my actions.


PEACH has given me a wonderful opportunity to enrich my life. It is unlike other volunteer opportunity in that I am given the chance to bond with students and fellow teachers over the course of the program and teach such great students. The program has showed me how fortunate I have been in life and has given me motivation to do more with it. The program has also given me the opportunity to make many new friends. Every teacher experiences the joys, frustrations and rewards of teaching a class of eager and selfless kids. We are all touched by their stories and all strive to do as much as we can to improve their lives. We bonded as we shared stories of our successes and failures in class and shared tips on how to teach.


We collaborated for group activities for the students and helped each other where we could. I became very close friends with some of my fellow teachers over the course of this year?s program, and wanted to enjoy some time with them before we parted ways. Most of us will not see each other again until next year?s camp, if at all, and we wanted to get together for one last hang out. We planned to talk to each other and play cards in the lobby to get to know each other even better. We thought that it would be acceptable since PEACH could see that we were staying in the hotel and not leaving to drink, smoke, or go to KTVs.


Tina did make us stay in our rooms, but I don?t think any of us could sleep. I know I was really emotional. I was sad for the end of PEACH. I had just said goodbye to my students, knowing I would probably never see them again. I was remembering all the kind things they had said to me after the talent show and was thinking of how each of them had progressed during the week. Many of them had told me that while I had not made a huge difference in their English instruction, I and the other PEACH volunteers had taught them that happiness is achievable.


That bothered me and pleased me in so many ways. I?m happy that I was able to show them happiness. But at the same time, I wish I could have done so much more for them. I was also sad that I would be leaving my fellow teachers. We had become very good friends in a short amount of time, and I really wanted to spend time with them and talk to them.


 I knew that other teachers had similar feelings, and we agreed to meet up. Again, we only wanted to sit around, talk and play cards. Unfortunately, we weren?t able to do that. I deeply regret violating your trust. I understand your concern for us after what happened in Li Jiang. I think that PEACH?s policy does make sense, but there are some things I would like to say about them.


Before I write about what I would do in your position, let me apologize for any shortcomings in my logic. I know that running PEACH is not easy and that you have many things to consider. I have no idea how complicated your job is, so I?m sorry if my reasoning seems stupid.


In your position, I would definitely confine the teenagers to the hotel after a given time. That way you could be sure that they aren?t out drinking or smoking or doing other inappropriate things. However, I would allow the teenagers to stay up and talk with each other in the hotel lobby until a given point. Teenagers could use the extra time to socialize, do their own homework, or prepare for the next day?s classes. The lobby is well lit, so teenagers could be easily supervised, and the hotel staff could easily see if anyone were to leave. I believe the teenagers would appreciate the extra time, and would be perfectly safe in the lobby. They also wouldn?t be disturbing other hotel guests.


I would also give the teenagers extra time on the last day of camp. Many of them will be upset from saying goodbye to their students, and I think it?s beneficial for them to be around each other to comfort one another. Also, they will want time to talk and say goodbye.


Again, I am sincerely sorry for disobeying PEACH rules and for any flaws in my logic. I would be happy to have some extra time to hangout and talk with my fellow teachers. I believe that any time allotted to us will help us plan for the next day and will not hurt our ability to teach. I do not believe that any of us have the intention of abusing your trust and doing inappropriate things. I hope to have the opportunity to return to Yuan Yang next year and work with great students again.


Thank you for your consideration,






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