Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A meeting on a misty Sunday morning with children and parents from Hoa Van community

Sunday morning Lien and I went on a motorbike through heavy mist, so thick that twice we had to seriously slow down as we couldn't see more than about 10 metres in front. By the way Lien is a good Buddhist friend, who also helps with our charity projects and in my home and garden. We were on our way to meet another friend, Duyen,our Children's Education Foundation assistant who does the translating and transcribing, plus plus. We were to meet up with the group of 13 children with either a parent or a relative to pay for term 2 of the 2009-2010 school year and to see how everything was going this school term and find out if their accommodation in Da Nang was still suitable and working well for them.

This project was started at the beginning of the academic year and on each visit to them, both parents and children have looked tense and worried, as if wondering if we would agree to sponsor and then later wondering if we would continue. This meeting was different they were smiling and happier than I had ever seen them before. We had a good laugh on and off too as we had brought guests this time who added humor to the situation; Stephen, the USA coordinator, Brenda an English supporter and Bruce and Elaine two Canadian sponsors. Stephen and Bruce and Elaine had questions for the children and the answers were interesting. One question was to find out if any of them knew what they wanted to do after they completed school. The career choices varied quite dramatically with several wanting to be doctors or teachers. Other desired careers were fashion designer, business woman and journalist. Elaine asked if they would be happy to sing a song and they sang one about caring for each other and not discriminating. Bruce and Elaine then broke into song and the look on the faces of the children was precious.

So another term has started and we have the 13 back in school for this term. We still need sponsors for some of the children but either way we are determined to help these bright children fulfill their dream to complete school and have worthwhile careers. It was a satisfying and enjoyable morning knowing that the 13 sweet and bright children have the support they need to accomplish their dreams but the best thing that morning was actually seeing them smiling and laughing.