Double Ninth celebration honors hardworking grandparents in rural village

Each year, the Double Ninth Holiday (also known as the Senior Citizens’ Festival) is observed on the ninth day of the ninth month in the Chinese calendar. The traditional event to honor the elderly was recently celebrated in rural villages served by OneSky.

This year, as in years past, OneSky Family Mentors organized celebrations to show appreciation for the villages’ eldest residents, many of whom are raising their grandchildren whose parents have left for jobs in the city.

“This holiday celebration teaches the children about the origins of the festival and why they should respect the elderly. It also allows them to thank their hardworking grandparents for caring for them,” said OneSky Family Mentor, Panpan.

Panpan recounted how the teachers helped the children in the village to prepare decorations and the festivities for their grandparents who gathered in the cool autumn breeze to celebrate the annual festival.

Their faces beaming with joy, happy grandparents joined their grandchildren in handcrafting holiday cards, blowing balloons, and eating cakes. Being kids at heart, they had as much fun as their grandchildren.

“I’m old, and I can’t see it clearly,” one smiling grandma said jokingly while sticking colored paper on a greeting card.

“Grandma. I will help you!” said her little grandson, gently taking his grandmother’s hand while helping her to finish the artwork.

The celebration concluded with the children presenting homemade greeting cards to their grandparents, drawn with their favorite pictures and blessings, to express their heartfelt gratitude.

“Grandma, you have to get up so early every day to wash clothes and cook meals for us, to work in the fields, and to get us to and from school. You have worked very hard. I love you,” one little girl named Xuanxuan had written to her grandmother, who was greatly moved by her words.

Holiday gatherings are integral to strengthening village communities. Read more about how OneSky helps children and families in rural China.