Wednesday, November 15, 2017

One of the provinces we have been working no longer has any poor

One of the provinces we have been working in for the last 12 years has recently been classified as having no poor. All NGO's no longer are working there due to this classification, including CEF. I already miss this warm and honest farming community.

The reality is the communities here are very vulnerable each year due to the storms, flooding and animal diseases, which means it is just for short periods of time that some of them climb out of debt and poverty before dumped back in it again.

Due to the flooding and storms they many have wanted to build strong homes to protect themselves, so also have accumulated debt in turning their simple one room homes into solid two to three bedroom homes.

Many here still have dilapidated farm houses badly in need of repairs. There are broken homes due to not be able to make a living farming, so the fathers have gone permanently to live and work far away where there is work, with some not returning or sending money home. Children are being brought up by grandparents who are poor and elderly and can't easily deal with this big responsibility either financially or practically. It's a predominantly poor community.

Graeme CEF's Manager in Australia is helping with updates of our CEF students

Graeme, CEF's manager in Australia has met the CEF children as he has spent a lot of time in Vietnam over the last few years. He has been helping this term with some of the CEF student updates for sponsors. You may hear from him instead of me. Emails will come from the same email address. This help is wonderful and will reduce the period of time it takes to get updates out to all our sponsons which is normally about 8-9 months to get them all out.

We are grateful that we have so many caring sponsors and that you patiently wait for the updates on the children you care about and help to keep in school.

Friday, October 6, 2017

She wants to be an athletics coach ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Vy

While most of her classmates want to be teachers, doctors or engineers in the future, Ly wants to be an athletics coach. It’s a passion of hers. ‘I find that running helps me to be healthy and brings me alive. My body feels different as if it has more energy.’ Since grade ten, she has won medals for running at school and in district athletic competitions.
With her love of this sport she wants to inspire the younger generation to run and recommends running to her relatives and friends. ‘Anyone can do it anytime, anywhere’, she told us. She is in her last year of high school and is working hard to make her dream come true.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Making up natural sanitary kits ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Ngoc

This morning CEF staff and a volunteer, Mrs Minh, put natural sanitary kits together to bring to our CEF students and other students in Phuoc Son district this weekend. The kits are a wonderful donation from Mrs Sarah (Days For Girls) to these very poor girls who can only occasionally afford to buy sanitary towels. Using these natural kits is good for their health but also very economical. They can reuse them many times as long as they wash them carefully and dry them under the sun. I think for sure the girls will appreciate them.
Thank you so much to Mrs Sarah for donating all the parts for these practical and useful kits and for caring about the CEF girls.

About CEF students letters ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Thuy

At this time of year at CEF we receive many letters from our students that they have written for their sponsors. In these letters most of them wrote about their summer holiday. Although many students helped their families with the housework, farming or with the family business, they enjoyed their summer with their families, friends and neighbours.
Translating these letters is part of our work and we always enjoy reading their letters because it not only helps us to know about their lives more, but also brings back our own childhood memories.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Period Poverty ~ Guest blog by CEF's Australian manager Graeme

 I read this recently, "Struggling to afford sanitary products is just another burden for low-income women - who are normally the ones taking care of everyone else too."

The article reported on girls missing school during menstruation because they didn't have anything but rags or newspaper to use. Poor rural girls and women struggling to feed their families and unable to afford what we take for granted to bring some freedom and dignity to their lives? No. This was is Scotland.

It brought to mind the high school girls in central Viet Nam CEF supports. Girls from ethnic minorities who are supported by the government to attend school but whose allowances aren't even enough for education supplies or extra tuition sessions. As they come from poor families their parents can't provide enough funds for these education extras or for breakfast or personal items such as sanitary pads.  A US$200 annual scholarship make a big difference to each girl, apart from reducing the risk of them being taken out of school, it provides them with funds for extra tuition sessions and school supplies.

This Sunday, October 8th we'll be taking sanitary kits, including washable pads, to the girls in the Phuoc Son Scholarship Program.  These colourful and practical kits were donated by 'Days for Girls' and will ensure they don't miss any days of school.

*Guardian 9/8/17 

Monday, September 11, 2017

The new school year has started! ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Ngoc

It’s an exciting time of year with the new school year having started a week ago throughout Vietnam.  
Vietnamese students are eager to welcome in the new academic year with their dear teachers and friends and so are the CEF children. Our sponsored children are very happy to have the chance to continue their education. Thanks to CEF’s sponsorship program, they have money to pay for their school fees, other necessary fees, stationery, uniforms and some of their extra tuition classes which contribute towards them being able to improve their results. They are keen to continue their schooling because they strongly believe that education is the only way for them to escape from poverty and lead them to a bright future.
We, at CEF, always encourage them and try to help provide support for our girls to make progress with their education.
(Photo - unknown source)

Monday, September 4, 2017

The story about a wonderful man - the father of many children in Vietnam

Manus is an amazing person supporting many children, disabled and not disabled, so that they can receive an education. He sponsors nine CEF children. Please when you have time listen and see this interesting and touching youtube interview on him to learn about this war veterans life and work. (copy and paste into search bar to see it)

Thursday, August 31, 2017

A CEF students' introductory letter to her new sponsor

The following is the introductory letter a CEF student wrote to her new sponsor.

I was very happy when hearing from CEF’s staff that I will be sponsored by you from this coming school year. Today I am writing this letter to send a big thank you for caring and giving me the possibility to complete high school and go onto higher education. I also want to let you know more about my family in this letter.

My parents have two children: my older sister who is about to finish high school and
go onto university and me. My father used to be the sole provider in my family and works as a hired labourer on construction sites. Since last July, his working ability has been reduced because of having many diseases at the same time like serious spinal degeneration, haemorrhoids and peripheral neuropathy. He has to take medications regularly and has been advised to avoid working hard for a long time. My mother certainly has to become the main breadwinner, which forces her to provide for my family, our education and my father’s treatment. The higher grades we go into, the larger the burden sitting on my mother’s shoulders. My family mainly lives on two small plots of rice-growing land with several beds of vegetables in our yard, so the monthly income is very low and unstable. 

Although my parents have a very difficult situation, they always encourage me and my older sister to stay in school and study hard. I have received prizes for English in the Excellent Students Contest in my district for two years now, which makes my parents very happy and proud of me.

Having heard that you will help me with my schooling, I have much more motivation in my studies. Your help not only keeps me in school but also reduces my mother’s difficulties. I promise to try my best to study hard to show my gratitude for what you have done for me.

Before saying goodbye, I wish you and your family every happiness and good health.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

CEF students in need of education sponsorships

CEF regularly has students referred to us due to the relatives not being able to afford the education costs.  

It often is a death in the family that makes it impossible to afford the education costs as now there is just one income. Sometimes it is due to a serious illness in the family as they have large debts and loans to repay. It can be due to failed crops, death of all their livestock or just rising education costs that they simply can't meet that brings them to us asking for help.

After all the official paperwork has been done we do home interviews to make sure they really do need help, then we add them to the list of students in need of help.

Below are girls in need of help with their secondary school, high school and university education. There are also two boys in need of help because their families can't keep them in school. One boy is an orphan and one has a mother with mental illness and dad collects garbage. Without help they can't continue their education. These students sponsorships vary from US$320 to US$385 a year for school and from US$400 to US$700 for university. If you would love to take on a sponsorship please get in touch: