The following report came from Lynn Yarbrough, Virginia Baptist’s Kingdom Ambassador in China:
In 2001, Lynn Yarbrough, Virginia Baptist Kingdom Advance Ambassador in China, was asked by the Xi’an YMCA to provide volunteers for their summer outreach program with children. Xi’an is the capital of Shaanxi province, located in the northwest part of China.
Our first program began in 2002 with two college students who conducted English activities with children as part of the YMCA’s summer outreach program.
In 2004, at least 21 college students and young adults visited Xi’an and conducted a variety of activities assisting the YMCA, after which they attended the Youth Congress of the Baptist World Alliance in Hong Kong. In 2005, two college students again conducted English activities for the Xi’an YMCA.
In 2005, Buddy Burgess, minister for recreation and pastor of the deaf congregation for Richmond’s First Baptist Church, had a vision of enlisting professional basketball coaches and conducting basketball clinics in China.
Lynn introduced this idea to the Xi’an YMCA, and beginning in 2006, FBC Richmond brought at least 31 volunteers throughout the next four summers, creating great excitement and giving the YMCA a unique opportunity of service to the community.
Anne and Buddy Burgess from FBC Richmond and Lynn Yarbrough attended the Xi’an YMCA Centenary celebration October 16-18, 2014.