Rice Scholarship and I

 

Ly Kieu Hai, 13 years old, Nung ethnic minority, Class 7, Ta Chai School of Bac Ha District; parents divorced; lives with old grandmother 

About two months ago I was told about the Rice scholarship, an initiative that helps kids from ethnic minorities in upper provinces of Vietnam, to have food so they can get through the day. These children are not as fortunate as most of us were when we were growing up (me included), some are not fortunate enough to even have access to food every day. The Rice Scholarship gives to children food
and hope for the future.

Vang Thi Chieu, Tay ethnic minority, 8 years old, Class 2A, Na Hoi 1 primary school; child with disability, poor family 

Along with my family, we sponsored 5 children. What is important is not the amount of children I was able to sponsor but for me it was the fact that I was able to deliver these scholarships to the children personally. The children watched us arrive and some had the biggest smiles on their faces and others were scared.

 

30 kindergarten children at Can Cau Commune received each a sweater and a toque 

 

I have volunteered plenty of times before and did quite of lot of projects that could have prepared me for this trip, but this trip was truly a new experience for me. How can you describe the joy on the kids’ faces? Helping people in need is one thing but providing food for children that otherwise might not have access to it is another. This trip was definitely eye-opening.

Thao Manh Hung: 7 years old, Mong ethnic minority, Class 1C, Sin Cheng Primary School of Simacai; father died; mother re-married; lives with old grandfather 

I am really grateful for my colleagues for having introduced me to this scholarship program and even more grateful that I was able to share this experience with them. Over the weekend I spent in Simacai and Bac Ha visiting schools I took quite a few pictures and these ones I am sharing with you talk for themselves. The look in the eyes of these children tells you more than words could ever tell.

Simacai students

It is unbelievable that for about 40$ you are able to help a kid get food in order for him\her to go to school, concentrate, learn and hope for a better future. This is what the rice scholarship is. It gives hope to children. It gives them faith in life and it gives them opportunities for their future. I know now that I will support this cause for the years to come and I hope to be back in Vietnam and that I will be able to deliver scholarships once more.

 

Giang Seo De, 8 years old, Class 2A, Lung Cai Primary School of Bac Ha; father died, poor family with four young children

 

Thank you to the organisers and the people responsible for this program, please continue your great work!

Words by: Audrey Desmarteaux-Houle
Photos by:  Audrey  Desmarteaux-Houle and RSP

Rice Scholarship in Vietnam

The Rice Scholarship Program is a charity program aiming to assist disadvantaged students, particularly those from ethnic minority groups, in remote and mountainous areas, to continue their education. The program was initiated in 2005. Individual donors contribute money, time and effort to raise fund, establish relations with local partners, coordinate and manage the program on a voluntary basis. Contact us here

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