Saturday, December 29, 2012

Home visits in Duy Xuyen

Today I was thinking about changes in the lives of some of the children in our Duy Xuyen education program.

When we first started helping some of these Duy Xuyen children six years ago they only had what we would consider temporary homes; homes made from various materials such as wood planks, bamboo, plant fibres, aluminium sheeting, plastic sheeting and they all had mud floors. Because some of them are registered as very poor with the local government, those families have been given grants to build small new homes. Not really enough funding to do so, but a good start with a bank loan or loan from relatives or help from another charity to build little homes.

It was good to reflect on the fact that their lives are easier now; they have stable homes and educational support for their children. They are still poor, but have their children in school, and have homes that are fairly waterproof, making their lives easier and less stressful; although most of them now have home loans.

Friday, December 28, 2012

More books for the mobile library

Graeme bought some traditional stories for younger children and interesting books for the older children today. Thank you Graeme for adding to our growing collection of books for the children.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012


Along a muddy lane on the edge of Hoi An is Nga’s house. It looks over a flat expanse of rice fields stretching into the hazy distance. Stooped figures move calf-deep in the mud. It’s the time of year to prepare the paddies for planting.

Nga’s family do not own land but their front garden is lush with vegetables:sweet potatoes cover the ground and green beans climb up the trellis around the garden and along the path leading to the front door.

She’s growing up in an unusual family for Viet Nam: Nga’s mum is the breadwinner and her father stays at home looking after the kids and the house. And it feels a nice place to be despite its chaotic construction of wood and coconut matting, rough earth floor and rusty tin roof.

It’s Christmas day and we’re visiting Nga with Ted Mylnarz. He’s representing Liverpool Rotary who are paying for the schooling of Nga and nine other children in central Viet Nam.

That day we visited four more families all with very different circumstances but with one thing in common: they all know that one of their children will finish school.

(Photos and blog by Graeme Burn, CEF Manager, Australia)