Heera Training and Management Consultancy

eNewsletter August 2011

Dear Everyone,

Hi! And how are you all? It has been a great month in July and I am looking forward to August because of two good reasons. One is the fact that my calendar in August is a little bit more relaxed (which means time to go for a holiday and to relax) and secondly, I always look forward to Ramadan as I tuck in into all that great street food. On that score, let me take this opportunity to wish all my Muslim friends and clients a ‘Selamat Berpuasa’ and may all of you get closer to God in this holy month of Ramadan.

This month I want to talk about an emotional story of an amazing man called Bai Fang Li from Tianjin, China. Many of you may have read it already, but it certainly is worth another read. After I received an email in regards his story, I decided to do a little bit of research on him and I am glad that I did as I came away from my research, definitely believing more in the goodness of man and humanity, and overwhelmed with emotion at this true story of a truly great man who lived a life of selfless generosity.


Mr. Bai Fang Li was a trishaw peddler in the city of Tianjin, China. It is not known when he started, but he has supported hundreds of poor students using the money he earned from peddling his trishaw. In his lifetime, he contributed more than 350,000 yuan (approximately 55,000 US dollars) to finance more than 300 poor students in their tuition fees and living expenses, helping them to complete their studies.

His daughter recalls “He suffered throughout his life, saving on food and drinks, stitching his torn pants over and over again. When you throw away his old pants and buy new ones for him, not only does he not want to wear them, but he also gets angry at us for ‘wasting money’.”

According to Bai Fang Li, he has never bought any clothes. All the clothes that he wore, he picked up from the clothes people threw away at dumpsites. Sometimes he even wore different shoes on both his feet!! The same applied to food. His children remember an incident when he simply picked up a bun and said to his children, “what is so hard about this? This bun is the product of the farmers’ hard work. People throw it away; I pick it up and eat it; isn’t this a way to reduce wastage?” When asked about what he expected of the children he sponsored, his humble reply was “I only want them to study hard, get a good job, be a good person and to give back to the country.”

In May 2005, Bai Fang Li was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and passed away on 23 September 2005 at the ripe old age of 94. Thousands turned up for his funeral. He may have gone but he leaves behind a beautiful legacy of the kindness and generosity of one man who has in a sense renewed our faith in humanity.

After reading this story, I could not help but shed a few tears at Bai Fang Li’s beautiful and very touching story. I truly admire him for his goodness, big heartedness and kindness. I hope and pray that I could even be one tenth of what he was. This incredible quality of putting others before oneself and of giving as a way of life is not something that can be easily learned or taught. It is an inherent quality of a wonderful, wonderful human being. If there were more people who gave with the same generosity today, I think there wouldn’t be any homeless or hungry people anywhere in the world!

My last thought on this truly remarkable man is that he was a ‘poor’ man financially but probably one of the wealthiest men on earth in terms of love, compassion and generosity. If only we could all give with the same generosity as Mr. Bai Fang Li, if only………….!!!!

Thank you for taking the time to read this. I do hope I have in a small way inspired you to want to be a better person. Till my September newsletter, have a great month ahead and do take care.