A kindergarten in Tiantai Town, Qionglai, Sichuan, which was a victim of the May 12, 2008 earthquake, has been officially re-opened as Wirtgen Tiantai Kindergarten with funding from the construction machinery company Wirtgen China.
Wirtgen China, the Chinese arm of the German-headquartered Wirtgen Group, has been actively supporting the kindergarten in Tiantai Town, Qionglai, Sichuan which was a victim of the May 12, 2008 earthquake. Right after the earthquake disaster happened in Sichuan, on May 12, 2008, many Wirtgen China employees spontaneously donated in cash to express their wish to help the people there. And, at the same time, the managing director of Wirtgen China, Ulrich Reichert, and the deputy managing director, Thomas Hagspiel, decided that something should be done in the name of the company. As a result they made a joint donation of CNY500,000. On hearing about the kindergarten one of Wirtgen China's customers, Tong Wei, the president of Fuhuashengye Road Machinery Company spontaneously sponsored a 200-square-meter playground with a donation of CNY30,000.
Attending the opening ceremony were local dignitaries including Li Xianjun, the deputy mayor of Qionglai City. Wirtgen China was represented by Ulrich Reichert, the CEO and managing director of Wirtgen China; together with his wife, Miranda Reichert; and Shirley Zhu, the public relations manager and assistant to the MD of Wirtgen China. Also present was Tong Wei, the president of Fuhuashengye Road Machinery Company.
The new 480-square-meter kindergarten building has three classrooms, a function room, an office for the teachers, a kitchen, a cloak room, and a guard's room. For recreation the kindergarten has a new 200-square-meter playground. Currently the kindergarten has five teachers and 50 pupils and they expect to have more than 60 pupils after Chinese New Year 2010.
Wirtgen China said that they decided to help Tiantai because it was not as well-known as places that were being mentioned again and again by the media in the aftermath of the earthquake, and it was therefore getting less attention. Rather than give to places that could get help from other sources, the company and its employees preferred to give aid where aid was lacking. The reason for selecting a kindergarten was similar. Primary schools are included in China's nine-year compulsory education system, so the standard primary school buildings in this location had obviously fared much better. Thus helping with the kindergarten building became the first priority for Wirtgen.