Friday, March 31, 2017

About a budgeting session coming up ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Kim Chi

It is essential for the children CEF supports who are in grade 12 and at university, to learn how to budget. Their families have to pay all their expenses while they are at university and living away from home in shared accommodation. We want to help them understand how important budgeting is so they can budget properly.

We did a session last year for local children at the CEF office and they are did well with their budgets. We would like to run another one at CEF this April for those students who were unable to attend the last one. The students will work on their monthly and yearly costs with my support. The activities we do together will be useful for them and will also help them to make realistic decisions about going to university in the future.

US$59 will cover the transport costs for nine grade 12 students. You can help them take part in the session so that they feel more confident about managing their money when they become university students.

Please get in touch if you want to help with this cost:

A strong and determined student ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Vy

In Vietnam when a girl grows up without a father, there are a lot of negative effects on her life especially for a girl from an unstable low income family. She may face financial, educational or mental and emotional health issues.
Becoming the main breadwinner her mother certainly faces a lot of difficulties. While the father’s absence does not seem to cause a girl’s school results to be poor it appears that his absence seems to decrease the ability of a girl to attain high results.
There are a lot of challenges for a girl growing up without her father, but some girls in our education sponsorship program have been making sweeping changes in their lives including in their studies.
'D' is a typical example. She has been living in a poor farming family with no man over many years. Tough and difficult though their life is they are always happy and satisfied, seeing that D is not only a good student at school but a strong determined girl. Knowing her mother’s daily difficulties is the biggest motivation making her study really hard to change her future and that of her family. Rather than blaming her family circumstances, D considers them a challenge to overcome. She thinks very differently from most females in Viet Nam preferring a career working with men rather than having a man in charge, because she wants to be more authoritative and more straight-talking as well as showing that a girl like her can get a job which is normally reserved for men only.
One of her big goals after high school is to get into Da Nang University of Technology and Science which only boys usually apply to. She wants to be a quantity surveyor in civil construction, a career that it is thought that women cannot handle. As D says, "Don't stop when you are tired, stop when you are done”.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

English language development with CEF staff ~ Guest blog by Graeme, CEF's Australian manager

We do a lot of writing at CEF. Hundreds of reports, biographies and letters are written and translated each year. It’s quite a task for our four staff. They are working in their second language producing English that will pass muster with sponsors across the English speaking world and they have to work within a strict time frame so that sponsors receive updates and letters from the girls they are helping in a timely fashion. So, to make all this writing more relaxed and efficient, even enjoyable, I have been working with Ngoc, Thuy, Kim Chi and Vy. They are all keen to write better which means things like more naturally, more accurately and, well, just better. They want to be able to write more complex sentences, have a broader range of vocabulary, use more idioms and make fewer errors. So we work together on their drafts, talk about what makes a blog catch a reader’s attention and play around with sentences to see how many ways we can say the same thing. I love it, and I think they’re having fun too. And now that their writing is getting better, I’m having less work to do editing and Linda receives letters, bios, blogs and reports faster! Win win win.

(Photo is of a couple of textbooks that are being used in the English sessions)

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Anti-Trafficking Education ~ Guest blog by CEF's Australian manager Graeme

Photos: Vulnerable minority tribe girl out of school and children working in vegetable fields

Trafficking people has many results, among them are slavery, exploitation and misery. The number of trafficked people around the globe is not easy to calculate, estimates vary from 10 to 35 million. However many there are, it’s too many. We have first hand experience of how vulnerable teenage girls are to grooming on social media leading to some form of slavery, usually sexual.

Our staff have trained with the anti-trafficking NGO Blue Dragon Children's Foundation in Ha Noi and are preparing to run sessions for children and parents who we support. What trafficking is and how it can be recognised is part of their English language course at CEF and we’re looking for other audiences in the Hoi An area the staff can present to.

This video gives a full and confronting view of this terrible trade in human lives:  

If you’d like to help us to raise greater awareness here in Vietnam, especially here in Hoi An or Da Nang and so equip young girls and their parents with essential knowledge about trafficking you can do so, by letting us know of suitable venues to present this important subject, or you can donate on our web page via PayPal or into our bank account, to support our anti-trafficking work. 

We also are happy to present in English to groups interested in supporting anti-trafficking.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Photos of most of CEF's Quang Nam students on term 2 payment day

Last weekend CEF made term 2 payments to our Quang Nam students. Quite a few didn't make it due to illness, hospitalization, competitions, exams, or important extra tuition. Those student will be coming to the CEF office to receive term 2 payments.
The photos are of most of our CEF students from different districts here in Quang Nam.

About a sweet and hard-working student in need of a sponsor ~ Guest blog by CEF's Ms Vy

She is a sweet girl with a nice smile who was born into a large poor farming family. With her maternal grandmother too old to work and her father suffering from multiple diseases her mother is the main breadwinner in her family.

Thinking about her family’s situation to save money she decided to study on her own at home instead of taking extra tuition classes and despite having no teacher she has always got very good results for all her subjects over the years with an average score between 9.0/10 to 9.2/10. English and history are her best subjects for which she has won prizes in excellent students contests in her district. She is an amazingly good student considering she takes no extra tuition classes at all.

Her skinny and exhausted mother although burdened by the costs of her daughter's education has never had a thought of stopping her schooling because she wants to give all her children a full education so that they can have a better future. Being aware of this, N.A. always takes her studies very seriously so that she can do really well, and is hoping and dreaming of going to university so she can get a good job after graduation.

We are looking for a committed sponsor to help her complete her education enabling her to have a better future with choices. If she is sponsored she can continue with her grade 8 studies. Her sponsorship for the 2016-2017academic year is US$280.

Please get in touch if you would like to sponsor her:

Monday, February 13, 2017

A CEF visit to two girls ~ Guest blog by Graeme, CEF's Australian manager

CEF's Australian manager is in Vietnam for some months and wrote about the visit to these two girls on Saturday.
I first met the two girls who are being cared for by their granny when CEF went to make an initial assessment of their situation last year. What a delightful change I found on this visit. N and N were more confident and relaxed and granny, though still suffering from arthritis in her knees, which made walking hard, was much more cheerful. She makes and sells tofu with a sweet syrup in the local hamlet carrying her cooking stove and everything else. She used to have to walk all the way with two baskets and a pole to carry them on over her shoulder, but a compassionate neighbour gave her an electric bike and asked that she pay them back when she can. She commented that business was slow at present as so many families went away to see their families and hadn't returned yet, but was positive that business would pick up very soon.
(Photo by Graeme)

Sunday, February 12, 2017

A CEF visit to a lovely and determined CEF student ~ Guest blog by CEF's Australian Manager

I recently went with one of our staff to visit children and their families. Several of them live in a local fishing hamlet at the mouth of the river. One of these was D. She was in good spirits doing very well at school and planning to do a hospitality training course locally when she finishes school next year so she can then study close to her family.

Over the Tet holidays she worked at a local restaurant earning good money. She enjoys earning as she then can help her mother who is very poor and has to support her children from a second marriage on her own. It was so good to see such a bright girl in difficult circumstances working so hard, having satisfaction from working, and having such clarity and determination regarding her future.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Recent fundraising has enabled CEF to provide Tet Food Parcels, Lucky Money, as well as educational sponsorships for two girls

Recent fundraising in Australia organized by Graeme, CEF's Australian manager, enabled CEF to provide many Tet (New Year) food parcels and 'Lucky Money' envelopes to children here in Vietnam. These children are from families that are too poor to afford any special foods as well as a sack of rice, which would allow them to enjoy their New Year celebrations. We also gave each child some 'Lucky Money' in a red envelope.

Besides this wonderful result, there were enough funds to help two girls stay in school by providing them with educational sponsorships.

This girl's mother died from breast cancer and dad who has back damage is challenged to work much. He is the sole care giver of his daughter and strongly believes in girls being educated so works hard until the pain is too much, then rests a few weeks, then works until he is in pain again. He can't work enough to cover all her education costs which now are very high as she is in her last year of high school. She deserves support as each year she is the best student in her year.

Sadly for this young girl and the family, mum is dying of breast cancer. Dad is struggling to support three children, one of whom has special needs. He also is supporting his elderly parents. This CEF educational support will help relieve some of the burden he has.

Thank you Graeme, your many friends, English language examiners and the administrators at examinations for this amazing support!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Tet Parcel Giving Day

Today we gave Tet Food Parcels and Lucky Money to the poorest of our CEF children. Over this week and before Tet the others who didn't receive theirs today will receive a Tet Food Parcel and Lucky Money.

Many thanks to CEF donors and sponsors, family, Graeme, Graeme's friends and English examiners who between them all raised the funds needed for Tet Food Parcels for the poorest of our children here in Quang Nam. It was a fantastic effort with wonderful results. Thank you to all of you!