Corinne Richeux Hua is the Founder and Executive Director of Stepping Stones. Corinne is half British and half French, and graduated in Chinese studies from Cambridge University in 1990. Since moving to Shanghai with her husband in 1993, Corinne has worked in the Commercial Section of the British Consulate General and as H.R. Senior Manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers, and has two children. Corinne has been working in the non-profit sector in Shanghai since 2005.
“When I first visited some migrant schools in Shanghai in 2006 and asked the Principals what help they needed, they all asked me to help them to teach English to their students. I already knew a lot of English speakers in Shanghai who were looking for a meaningful way to help others. Stepping Stones emerged as a neat way to bridge a need in our local community with a valuable resource. I’ve always been passionate about social service, volunteering, education and cultural exchange, and I derive inspiration each day from the amazing people that Stepping Stones brings together from all walks of life in Shanghai.”
Sebastien is the Program Director of Stepping Stones. Sebastien holds a Ph.D. in geography from the University of Montreal (Canada) specialised in Chinese society, migration studies, ethnicity, and socio-economic development. He has written articles and given several presentations focused on China’s minorities and migrant workers. He contributed to the East Asia Forum Quarterly and published a chapter in a book titled Regional Minorities and Development in East and Southeast Asia.
Eva participated in various volunteer activities before being a member of Stepping Stones. With knowledge of non-profit organizations, she devotes herself to working with caring volunteers and friends who are willing to help others. Eva grew up in Shanghai and graduated from Shanghai University (SILC), majoring in International Economics and Trade. She earned financial experience working for the Bank of China.
“Wherever I go, I have always been keen on getting involved in social volunteering programmes. It’s my great honour and pleasure to contribute to the future of children and of my hometown, Shanghai, by being part of the Stepping Stones team. I first learned about Stepping Stones when I attended a talk given by the Director Corinne Hua. I was deeply touched to hear that Stepping Stones exerts its best effort to improve the education of migrant children in China. I love to devote myself to this meaningful programme and I enjoy facing the challenges we are facing. Stepping Stones volunteers impressed me with their passion and creative thinking. Their ideas inspire the whole team and encourage children to learn in an innovative way.”
Claire Ding is Stepping Stones’ Director of Training and Curriculum. Claire was first involved with Stepping Stones as a volunteer and saw how the program helped students become more confident about speaking English.
Claire is an experienced TEFL teacher and an in-house teacher trainer. She holds a CELTA certificate and a Trinity Diploma in TESOL. She believes helping volunteers and school teachers to deliver more effective lessons will have significant impact on the students.
Sally Wangsawijaya is Stepping Stones’ Curriculum and Training Manager. Sally is Indonesian, and has lived in Malaysia, Singapore and Australia before. She started her non-profit career in Malaysia as an Advocacy Officer, Social Worker and Case Supervisor for a domestic violence shelter. She was also a regular volunteer for a suicide prevention crisis call hotline in Malaysia and China. Prior to her non-profit work, she was working in the Public Relations and Corporate Communication field. Sally graduated with a Bachelor of Communications from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT), Australia.
“I started volunteering with Stepping Stones within the first week of arriving in Shanghai, and volunteered for two semesters before joining as a full-time staff member. I enjoyed the experience tremendously and felt that Stepping Stones has made a positive impact to the migrant communities that it serves. Volunteering with Stepping Stones has opened my eyes to the challenges faced by the migrant children in Shanghai. I am excited to be part of the Stepping Stones’ team and contribute towards the betterment of migrant community here.”
Julie Li is the Manager of Stepping Stones’ Home Classroom Program. She is happy to do such a job to help rural school students, especially when she observes the students’ excitement to have lessons from our volunteers. Julie hopes more volunteers will join our organisation to help more students in need.
Sherry, a Shanghai native, is responsible for managing Stepping Stones’ rural programs. Before joining Stepping Stones, she worked as an IT support engineer for over 8 years. She started her volunteering career at a community hospital assisting the elderly.
“One of my friends mentioned Stepping Stones by chance. While researching their organization, I was touched by the work they did and noticed there was an open position. I applied and was accepted for the job. I am deeply convinced that there is more happiness in giving than receiving. This is an idea I would like to spread to others, especially my young daughter.”
Ann Zhao is the manager for Shanghai English Teaching and Rural Individual Volunteer Programs, main responsibilities: coordinating with local schools, community centers and volunteers, assuring projects are formed and executed properly and improvements are put in place over the long term. Her purpose is very much aligned with Stepping Stones mission which is to improve the education and general welfare of disadvantaged children in China. She likes seeing students express themselves in English bravely and confidently. Ann is a new Shanghainese, before joining Stepping Stones, she worked in some MNCs as Service Manager and Project Manager. She was a Stepping Stones volunteer before joining as a staff member.
Teddy is the Manager of our Digital Literacy Program “Stepping Up”, responsible for delivering computer and life skills lessons to Stepping Stones’ students. Teddy, a Shanghai Native, graduated from Shanghai Sanda University, majoring in E-Commerce. He participated in various volunteer work before joining Stepping Stones, and he loves children very much.
“I first joined Stepping Stones in May 8, 2016 as a volunteer. Being a photographer for Stepping Stones’ 10 years anniversary reinforced for me how important education is in changing children’s lives. And it was the best anniversary party I have ever seen in my life. I discovered a lot of interesting projects, other non-profit organisations and dedicated people in this anniversary party, and the smiles of children were just like angels. I decided then to change my career to be a full time teacher, as I always dreamt when I was a child. I hope Teacher Teddy can bring love and joy to these children in the future.”
Tu Wenjian is from Anhui, he moved to Shanghai with his parents when he was young, and did his schooling in Shanghai. Before joining Stepping Stones, Wenjian worked for Jiuqian Volunteer Center, a nonprofit organization that provides free liberal art education and after school tutoring to non-local students and local students from low-income families. He joined the finance team of Stepping Stones in 2021.
Jian Gao is the Volunteer & Internship Manager of Stepping Stones, responsible for the recruitment and management of volunteers as well as interns. She holds a PhD degree in Economic and Social History and has worked in media. She got to know Stepping Stones via an interview and started to volunteer with Stepping Stones since 2019.
“My previous research focused on the historical transition of Chinese villages as a whole and was not very concerned with the fates of individuals. My media experience led me to individual persons. Volunteering with Stepping Stones, as well as living in a Chinese village, increased my knowledge about rural China and people living there. To bridge the huge gap between the urban and rural areas, especially in education, is like the Chinese idiom “Yugong moves mountains”, and I am so impressed by Corinne’s persistence and resilience. So I want to join and do something instead of standing by and just making comments.”
Yili Huang is born and raised in Shanghai, she pursued her MBA degree in the US and ended up graduating from University of Washington in Information Management. She has traveled in a lot of countries, from India and Nepal to Brazil and Argentina. This experience has broadened her mind and helped her to see the world differently. After returning to Shanghai, Yili decided to do some charitable work and give back to the community. She joined us in 2019 as Events Manager.
“Education inequality in China is one of the biggest threat for migrant workers. I see the importance of improving those children’s welfare and education. I believe Stepping Stones is definitely making a valuable impact in our community.”
Stella is a volunteer of Stepping Stones, who is responsible to assist with office operations, and involved in many programs since 2021. Stella holds a Masters of Public Accounting and has accumulated more than 20 years working experience in management accounting. Years of project management background makes her realizes the importance of consistent engagement and devotion to achieving a mission. She hopes to do something to help more students to access developmental resources.