Throughout Vietnam it is a frequent sight to see little old ladies bent almost double as a result of a lifetime of toil in the rice fields. Thankfully today’s thirty and forty year old rice farmers have some labor saving machinery, such as harvesting machines for use in large rice fields and threshing machines are in use in most fields. Their bodies have no need to suffer to the same degree as their mothers did.
However, the job remains extremely arduous to achieve a small successful crop yield that will feed the family and hopefully provide a few dollars cash income. It involves toiling for hours each day and days on end, and in high temperatures and humidity for much of the summer farming season.
Little wonder then that these mothers and grandmothers are fierce in their determination to achieve better life outcomes for their children. And, it is no surprise that when the visiting CEF team asks the relevant questions, to assess the level of commitment in a household for the education of their children, we are invariably met with a resounding affirmation of support.
There is no doubt that these women embody the CEF ethos, that is (through education), of 'helping (their) girls grow to be women with choices'.