Tzu Chi University Members and Elders Crafted Red Envelopes (Cash Gifts) Together, While Alumni Shared Tips About Preventing Frozen Shoulders


This is the red envelope (cash gift) I’m giving to my great-grandchild this year! With the Lunar New Year drawing near, the Office of Humanistic Culture, renowned for its commitment to serving the elderly at Fu-Jing Temple, joined hands with these venerable seniors to craft festive red envelopes. Embellished with sincere wishes of Peace, Blessings, Happy New Year, and Cultivation of Compassion and Wisdom, each envelope radiated a golden sheen. They represent the profound blessings we eagerly look forward to sharing with younger generations during the Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations, creating a legacy of tradition and warmth.

Faculty members, staff, and students from Tzu Chi University make monthly visits to the temple, taking handicraft activities to the elderly persons. These sessions serve a dual purpose: they keep elderly persons physically active, help to prevent aging, and strengthen emotional bonds between them and the University community. Anita Yang oversees the activities and tailors each session around a unique theme. Last year, the focus was on crafting Lunar New Year couplets. In contrast, this year, the elderly persons warmly embraced the project of making handmade red envelopes.

University members supported the elderly persons in printmaking, enhancing their confidence and eagerness to participate. Rong-Zhen Chang of the University stressed that Its important not to let them feel useless, but to encourage every one of them to participate. Zi-Ling Lin said, Although some elderly persons might doubt their abilities or cite poor eyesight, we focus on boosting their confidence. Seeing their completed works brings them a profound sense of achievement.

Since 2021, Tzu Chi University has engaged its alumni in serving elderly people at Fu-Jing Temple. Coordinated by Joyce Hsiao, the initiative draws professionals, including physicians, social workers, psychologists, nurses, pharmacists, and physical therapists. Tailored for older adults, their presentations address mental and physical health, physical therapy, and welfare for the elderly. With eighteen sessions conducted so far, the alumni have demonstrated their extensive expertise and dedication to giving back to the community.

Before the Lunar New Year, Dr. Shao-Jun Chiu, an alumnus of the Chinese Medicine program who joined the University in 2012, offered his insights on managing shoulder and neck pain. Dr. Chius affection for the welcoming residents of Hualien and their health needs motivated him to stay and serve the community after completing his studies.

Dr. Chiu cautioned that intensive cleaning before the Lunar New Year could cause shoulder and neck pain, due to overuse. He also pointed out that this discomfort might not be muscular, but could signal heart or nerve issues. He advised seeking prompt medical help for pain in the justify side of the chest, shoulder, and hand, especially if its accompanied a feeling of pressure in the chest.

Additionally, Dr. Chiu demonstrated easy shoulder stretches and exercises for at-home care to ward off a frozen shoulder and took time to address the elderly people’s health queries.