Hello! And welcome to our Guide magazine Summer issue. Please download your copy here Summer Guide Magazine.
The welcome note for any Summer Guide issue is generally filled with
exciting news about all the fun activities and events to look forward to ahead. However, the 2020 summer season is unlike any that we as a community have experienced before.
To say that 2020 has gotten off to a challenging start is quite the
understatement. As I write this in early April, we have over a million confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide, and over 69,000 deaths.
In January 2020, the epicenter of the outbreak was the Chinese city of
Wuhan, and the focus of its spread was China and its neighbors. The virus was frightening – but it seemed as if it were far away from the daily lives of our family and friends in the rest of the world. It is now April, and I write this note from a little village high up in the Italian mountains.
We came here about 2 months ago to be with our family and wait out the Chinese outbreak; little did we know that Italy was going to be the next epicenter.
There is something immensely humbling in having experienced this outbreak in two seemingly unrelated societies (China and Italy). It reminded me of just how sensitive the world really is. It is
a powerful reminder that, on the pale blue dot we call Earth, the fate of all
humans is intertwined, that threats like this pandemic truly affect every corner of our planet. It is a wake-up call to acknowledge our humanity.
It has also demonstrated to me that some cultural and political elements
seem more effective than others in the ability to mobilize a society to respond to and manage this outbreak. I have been impressed at how quickly the China government has been able to put effective measures in place to curb the spread of the outbreak.
COVID-19 has turned our lives upside down. It has pressed a gigantic pause on the world as we know it and has stopped us all in our tracks. Although we hope to return to some version of normality in the coming months, it is probable that nothing will quite be the same again. Many have lost their livelihoods and businesses, and there is no diminishing the difficulties – emotional and financial – this has brought in its wake.
But amid the darkness, there is also hope.
• Hope to reimagine the world and one’s place within it – to seek out a
silver lining or two among the grayclouds
• Hope for a world with more kindness, tolerance, and love
• Hope for a world that acknowledges its interconnectedness
We have dedicated this issue to hope.
In this magazine you will read messages of hope from our partners and sponsors (page 12), community members (pages 17), counselors (page 24), and teachers (page 20). I am proud of this community and its ability to rally around and give love to this amazing city we live in (page 10) – you have demonstrated that Shanghai truly is home away from home for many of us.
Mahatma Gandhi said it best: “The future depends on what we do in the present.” I hope you choose love, kindness, tolerance, and empathy today.
Senait Petros Tekeste
CCS Executive Director