Saturday, September 8, 2012

Guest blog by Miriam about our first CEF Beach Outing

Hi this is Miriam here and I volunteer for CEF. Last year while I was in Hoi An we had the first beach day for the children. The children that are supported by CEF come from all over Quang Nam Province. There are also children in neighboring Danang province and northern Thai Binh province; but this outing was for the Quang Nam children.

We needed to organise a bus, meeting places, lunch to be brought to the beach, games and toys, sun block, drinks, snacks, volunteers to ensure the safety of the children and paid Vietnamese lifeguards. So well done to Linda; it was a big undertaking and big financial committment from an NGO. The day started with a fairly quite group who were solemnly given instructions by the VN lifeguards.

Some took to the water (fully clothed as is often the way here), but many held back in fear and perhaps wonderment mixed in. So trying to set a good example I entered the water with one of the younger girls (her parents had been lost in the floods, so she was very reticent, but not by the end of the day! I had on my long shorts and mans shirt for modesty. It was so funny to see the children struck almost dumb when the tourist walked by in bikinis; for them it was almost like seeing a naked person.

Once in the water they didn't want to come out, they did manage a couple of games, where we all cheated like mad and there was so much laughter and fun as we tried to fill water bottles with seawater without using our hands. The Kites and prizes were most popular.

A lovely vegetarian lunch was enjoyed by all followed by a nap, but needless to say the nap was very short as most wanted to play and learn more in the sea. Some enjoyed the kites and playing on the beach.

Towards the end of the day it was delightful to see those who had learned something helping the others, the comradery between the children was enchanting. To see children with so little sharing and supporting one another, to say nothing of the perpetual laughter and friendships that were made that day.

I feel as though I was honoured to be a part of this great day, I missed the one this year as I was in Australia, but I will be back for the next one!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Guest blog by Brian - 'Doubly Hard'

Life for many in the picturesque rural countryside of Thai Binh Province in Northern Vietnam can be very hard. The tranquil setting of small villages, dominated by beautiful church spires and old Chinese style buildings, tucked into the verdant green rice fields, belies the often difficult daily struggle faced by so many in those communities.

Many families are almost totally reliant on the output from their small rice plot as the principal source of food and a meagre cash income. And it is typically a full family effort; every able bodied family member doing their bit to ensure the best possible yield.

The loss of the physical presence of a key family member can have a significant impact on the family effort to provide for itself. But how doubly hard can it be when a family, already battling impoverished circumstances, is faced with the emotional stress of a beloved wife and mother of four young children suddenly up and leaving the home.

Such is the case for one particular family in the village of Phuc Li. The four young children of the Nguyen family were devastated some five years ago when their mother, with no explanation or warning, left the family home, never to be seen nor heard from again. The case was brought to the attention of CEF, which has seen fit to provide education support for the children in the hope that they may be able to build a life for themselves despite their hurt and the loss of a mother’s nurturing and guidance.

The family now comprises the father, his 75 year old father, twin boys Do and Doc, and sisters Diu and Nga.

The emotional plight of the children is accentuated by the fact that it is necessary for their father to spend long periods away from home in an attempt to earn a living for the family. Thus the physical and spiritual care of the children falls largely on the shoulders of the grandfather, a delightful and spritely old gentleman. However, it is a matter of concern that his ability to keep doing this for much longer must be questionable.

The emotional effect on a child of being deserted by a loved parent is profound. CEF representatives on annual visits to the family try to give these children a feeling that there are those who care about them, and who are willing to stick with them to help them build their own life, despite the cruel hand that fate has dealt them.

There are so many deserving cases but this is one that CEF firmly hopes to see result in a real success story.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Tough Mudder Fundraising for Children's Education Foundation

A recent donation made possible the purchase of these books for the children!Two of our staff went book shopping this weekend and chose a wonderful selection of books!

Morwenna, one of my children is raising funds for Children's Education Foundation through her and her teams efforts in perhaps the worlds toughest physical competition!! I can't even imagine the training they are doing to be able to do this competition!

The funds Morwenna and her team will raise doing this very, very tough competition go towards the Children's Education Foundation mobile library, most will go towards getting a motorbike, book boxes, and a frame made to carry book boxes and many books.

We will then have the means to frequently get these books to the children in the many communities we help throughout Quang Nam and Da Nang. The more funds we have the more books we can get, which will allow us to get books be be shared with all their siblings and if funds allow we can purchase educational books for the parents as well.

Last week which was the beginning of this term we started this project on a very small scale; we took the books we had to the children when we visited them. This week we took some more. Next week we have many more to take the children we will see over the weekend.

CEF financially supports many children to have an education, but we wish to further support literacy amongst the children we have in school in our sponsorship programs; this obviously increases their knowledge, but also opens up possibilities in thinking; opens up their world.

A highly literate person is a more employable person; this is very important especially in developing countries!

Please support this education project, which helps the children to be better students, have better tertiary education possibilities, open up their world and help give them have better futures with more choices!

Please donate on this site: