Sunday, May 18, 2008

Gifts to SWI's

Gifts are tokens of appreciation and it’s largely ceremonial. The gift itself is quite secondary to the act of giving. Don’t a make the gifts too extravagant, you don’t want it to look like a bribe. Look for gift’s that are NOT “Made in China” and nothing Political or Religious.
I read this somewhere and I thought it was interesting info on gift giving.

"...I wanted to share something I learned from our guide that I'd never read here before. She said that every time she goes to an orphanage the nanny’s pull her aside and show her a large pile of gifts that they don't know what to do with. She said usually these are lotions and they want her to translate the bottles for them.

Because they can't read the English on the bottle, they don't know what to do with them. Makes sense! If someone handed us a bottle of something white or pink and creamy and it was all written in Chinese we wouldn't know if it was body lotion or face lotion or soap for the shower. She had us all give her our gifts and she separated them into bags and labeled them so the nanny’s would know what they were.

She said the three most-appreciated gifts are: chocolate, cigarettes and perfume..."
another AP said...

"We put a note on each gift bag, with our name, our child's Chinese name and referral picture and "Thank You" in Mandarin on each bag so that they knew who it was from. We found that they (orphanage workers) seemed to like cosmetics and nice body lotions (enough small samples for 10-12 people)-they did not seem to like cigarettes as a gift and chocolate melted (we travel in the summer and it was hot and humid). All our gifts went to the orphanage workers, we gave no gifts to "officials" and were told not to."

I also read this too...

"The only thing I would caution about up front is, don't give or buy cheap items (I've been told that some people give samples of AVON lipsticks, or the free giveaways of perfume from department stores as gifts... which shows a disregard for the SWI directors and caregivers... they have taken care of your child for the last "X" number of months/years - and now is the time to actually show your appreciation of their care. Items they would appreciate:

American Ginseng
Cd's of current popular (hip hop, popular, country, or classical)
NICE cosmetics chapstick, lipstick, nailpolish, makeup,
DO NOT give samples or cheap cosmetics.
College logo (t-shirts, nice ink pens & refills, good stationery, etc.)
Hometown items
Nice soaps and fragrant lotions. The Chinese Love fragrance...
Nice perfume/cologne.
Very nice costume jewelry, such as Trifari, Monet, Napier, etc.
Nice Chocolates or Candy

Some DON'T's are:
NO sample sizes - considered to be insulting.
NO green hat to a man - signifies his wife is having an affair.
NO clocks or watches - represents death
NO candles - signifies a wish that their home will burn down.
NO gift that is white or black in color. These colors have negative connotations (such as white is the color worn at funerals)."
Cut Flowers

Some people that you want to consider giving gifts to:
Orphanage Director
Person in Charge of Children’s section
Adoption Logistics person
Adoption Registration Official
Chinese Notary
NO gifts needed for American Consulate Officials

-:¦:- Stephe -:¦:-


Our Journey to Leilah Grace said...

Wow, there are so many rules. I hope I haven't already messed up and offended someone with the gifts I have sent! Luckily our agency lets us send our care packages to their in-China staff for translation, and re-packing. I wrote a note asking that they remove anything they felt inappropriate. I just had no idea.
Thanks for the tips. One of my friends from our adoption group told us about your blog. It's great!
Thank you again,
Sheri W.
waiting for Leilah Di Grace 18 mos cl/cp Fuzhou City, Fujian

hiltonsheadeast said...

Great advice, Stephe ....Thanks!

LID: 2.16.06