Thursday, July 25, 2013

Why CEF helps Phuc Le girls to be educated - Guest Blog by Brian

Late afternoon;waiting for mum to return from the rice fields

As in most places, young children in the village of Phuc Le, northern Vietnam, enjoy the early part of their lives, while being blissfully unaware of the worries, anxiety and hard work endured by their parents to ensure family survival.

The delightful young girls pictured were encountered by the writer on a late afternoon stroll through the village. Through an interpreter they recounted how their mothers spent many hours working on the family rice plot; toiling for days on end to grow sufficient rice to feed the family for the coming year.

One spoke of her mum, who being very sick with a heart condition, continued to work each day. When questioned about grandparents, another told me how her nanna was bent almost double, a condition brought about by years of laboring in the rice fields; and a sight the tourist will often observe on the streets of cities and towns across the country.

It is stories like these that have inspired Linda and her supporters to try their utmost to “make a difference” for some of these kids. Education is the key. All too often, when a family has insufficient resources to educate all of their children, it is the girls who miss out in favor of their brothers. This inevitably sentences the girls to a life of toil in the rice fields.

By assisting families in that situation CEF is able to give those girls a chance of a better life. An education opens up options for the future and the manner in which a young person might choose to live, love, work and support their family. Your support is vital. And it is important to remember: by assisting one child to a well rounded education you will also be benefiting the lives of not only her current family, but all who may become part of her life in the future.

Let us hope we can keep the smiles on the faces of beautiful kids like these.

Monday, July 22, 2013

CEF is fortunate to have Ngoc working full time now; here she introduces herself

I am Ngoc. I have just graduated from the College of Foreign Languages at Da Nang University. I like travelling, watching films(especially Korean films), shopping and reading detective novels.

I also like peace and really hate a noisy and busy atmosphere. It is lucky that I was born in Hoi An. It seems that the living rhythm here is so suitable for me.

Up till now, I have worked for CEF as the education program assistant for nearly a year. I am responsible for the children in our education programs in Da Nang, Dai Loc and Dien Ban. Besides that, I am also responsible for the Mobile Library program. Having worked for CEF for around a year, I had a chance to enrich my knowledge and get more experience in working for an NGO. I realize that I am really keen on working in this field. I am too young and I had no experience when starting working for CEF, but thanks to Linda and her staff, I think I am more mature now. They are very nice with me and help me a lot. I love my part-time job now and love the working environment in CEF so I did apply for a full time staff position.

I am interested in doing charity work because I want to help the poor, especially the poor children. I hope they can have a strong belief in their bright future, which is possible if they try hard to study now. I do believe that if we try our best, we can overcome challenges or obstacles in life.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

7 alarming education facts that YOU can change!

These facts are shocking, but if everyone who reads them does something, that is then one less girl out of school and one less girl marrying before 18 and .........

If you want to help a girl receive an education please email us or any organization with education sponsorship programs: (AU&NZ) / (US&Canada)

1. 31 million girls worldwide are out of school.

2. 7 million cases of HIV could be prevented in the next decade if every child receives an education.

3. A child born to a mother who can read is 50 percent more likely to survive past age 5.

4. Each extra year of a mother’s schooling reduces the probability of infant mortality by 5 percent to 10 percent.

5. 215 million kids are involved in child labor, which deprives them of an education.

6. Two-thirds of the world's 880 million illiterate adults are women.

7. Every day, 39,000 girls younger than 18 get married. For them, education is freedom. (for AU / NZ interested individuals) (for Americans and Canadian's)

(Facts copied from article in Huffington Post, by Global Motherhood, in partnership with Johnson & Johnson)

Chi is Children's Education Foundation's most recent staff member ~ here she introduces herself

My name's Chi. I come from Duy Nghia Village – Duy Xuyen District. I have just graduated in Business Administration at the Economic University of Da Nang.

I was born into a poor family, and unfortunately I have never seen my dad. I was lucky that I was helped by Blue Dragon Foundation to receive an education. So now, I wish I could do something to help disadvantaged people the same as me.

During my student life, when I had free time, I used to volunteer for many NGOs, like Project Indochina and the Sunshine club, which gave me more experience and understanding about life of the poor.

I’m very happy to work with Linda and her nice staff. I hope I can apprentice quickly with their help.

Chi also graduated from university recently as did Ngoc. Achieving this goal is wonderful!

I am thrilled to have Chi join our CEF team and I am sure she will fit in well and learn quickly.
Welcome Chi!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

The hard-working families of Phuc Le Guest blog by Brian

While Vietnam as a whole climbs steadily up the economic ladder, many of its citizens, particularly in rural areas, continue a daily struggle against poverty. The tranquil, some might say idyllic, setting of the CEF target village of Phuc Le, belies the hard life faced by many mums and dads in the struggle to provide life’s basic needs for their families, ie. to feed, clothe, shelter and educate their children; and to keep them safe from sickness and disease.

Typical home of a CEF Student – Phuc Le Village

Phuc Le is a farming community; but not one to which many of us in fully developed countries would relate. For farming in this region read “subsistence” farming, a form of farming in which nearly all of the crops or livestock raised are used to maintain the farmer and the farmer’s family, leaving little, if any, surplus for sale or trade. The survival of the family is dependent on the success of the crop, predominantly rice in this region.

In this situation families must often prioritize in trying to fund those basic needs mentioned above. All too often it is education, investment in the future, that suffers most when things get tight. And, through cultural mores, it is more often girls in the family whose education is curtailed. A depressing situation when world authorities recognize that female education is the key to raising living standards across the globe.

Thus, Linda and CEF, with support from wonderful sponsors, have for some years assisted a number of Phuc Le families in order that they might keep their daughters in school, even when the going gets tougher than usual. And the results are starting to show. I recently had the great pleasure of interviewing no less than four young ladies who have just completed Year 12 with good grades, and are now preparing to sit for University Entrance Exams. Take a bow all you guys involved.

For me it has been such a great experience. To be privileged to return each year and see these young people, who just a few years ago were too shy to say boo, now self-confident, assertive young women with great personalities; all ready to take that next big step onto life’s stage, and with options in life their mothers and grandmothers could only have dreamed of.

Trang,one of the graduates this year