A group of University students warmed up a frigid January day with a winter carnival for 90 West Philadelphia children at the Christian Association Saturday. Excited screams, popping balloons, and running children filled the hall. According to seven-year-old Malcolm Graham, the children were given "a place to make new friends and play at the festival." Besides bringing happiness and smiles to the children, the program, participants said, was also an educational experience for both University students and the children. When asked what he had learned at the end of the day, 10-year-old Tyree Smith said that "all the children were the same because they all have feelings." Area children involved in the Penn Pals program and Community Kids programs attended the event. These organizations bring West Philadelphia school children into a big brother and big sister program with University students. College senior Greg Shufro, who founded Community Kids, said the festival was one of many ways to improve the program, in which University students help mentally handicapped children. The afternoon also included a presentation by Green Circle, a nationwide human relations education program for children. "The program is designed to teach children how to accept physical differences and understand each other and different cultures with a positive attitude," said Yu Bai, a Green Circle respresentative. The presentation brought positive reviews from Graham, who said he enjoyed "talking about everyone's friends from different countries." Nursing senior Colleen McCauley, one of the events organizers, said the event was held to commemorate Martin Luther King Week and African-American History Month.Comments powered by Disqus
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