Members of Sunwah GYLN Ho Chi Minh City Chapter met with Mrs Carrie Lam, Chief Secretary for Administration of Hong Kong SAR Government

Over the past few years, Vietnam and Hong Kong have achieved much progress in trade and diplomatic relations. On the occasion of Mrs Carrie Lam’s visit aimed at boosting trade and investment between the two sides, members of HCM Chapter had an interesting conversation with her at Sunwah Galleria on 16th August 2016.

During the meeting, we talked about Vietnam and Hong Kong’s young generation, our differences, challenges and opportunities. Through a short conversation, her profound story and leadership style have inspired us and left a deep impression in our hearts. Spending time to understand the establishment of HCM Chapter and the background of GYLN members, Mrs Carrie Lam also shared the vision of youth development in Hong Kong. Mrs Lam expressed the promising outlook to connect and open up opportunities for youth development between Vietnam and Hong Kong. Dr Choi also shared the reasons why he founded the Sunwah Foundation Global Young Leaders Network (GYLN) as well as his commitment to provide a ready platform for the youths from various countries to develop their international outlook, leadership skills, and commitment to public and social services.

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Mrs Carrie Lam received Sunwah GYLN Hong Kong Chapter T-shirt from Dr Choi and a 3D handmade painting from Sunwah GYLN HCMC Chapter members

At the end of the meeting, GYLN HCM Chapter members presented a 3D handmade painting by a local artist to Mrs Carrie Lam as a memorial gift of her visit and expressed their deepest appreciation to her for her willingness to support youth development.

We hope that Mrs Carrie Lam’s visit will enhance the relationship, trade and investment between Vietnam and Hong Kong, and the young generation of the two sides will inherit and continue to develop this legacy.

 

 

[Sunwah GYLN Hanoi ] Teamwork Training Report

After the completion of the annual recruitment program of Sunwah Global Young Leaders Network in Hanoi, the newbies headed for the first training and got in touch with brothers and sisters of Sunwah GYLN family in a cozy and loving atmosphere at Dong Mo, Son Tay. The ice-breaking training does more than a normal training –a chance for us to become more united and connected. All the games were physically demanding but that could not stop us from having our ultimate fun in the sun.

At half past 7 in the morning, all members gathered at the ULIS – Jonathan KS Choi Cultural Center to take a bus and get to the training place – a camping site at Dong Mo with fresh air and beautiful greenery. When the whole team arrived, we were divided into 2 teams to start the games. All members were eager to name our teams and choose a slogan to show spirit of the team. The first game required all members to walk together on special wooden boards to reach the goal as fast as possible. Everyone has to focus and trust each other in every step in this game. After the game, GYLN members were all thrilled and excited to join the next.

The next challenge was more exciting and quite unusual – it was like table tennis with the use of band rolls to pass the ball over the net. Everyone at first doubted that they could not play this game well but after some trials, we all got the hang of it and had a lot of fun playing. The competition was very fierce; two teams took turns by leading each other point by point and got better after each turn of play.

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The third team game was very much demanding and difficult. Everybody needed to overcome their own fear of heights while remaining balanced on the specially designed terrains and obstacles. Nevertheless, nobody is alone in the fight; we all supported one another in these obstacles and had a success in the end. Everyone was quite exhausted but the most important thing was that nobody gave up – we all tried our best to contribute to the success of the teams.

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Finally came the last challenge and also the hardest one. Whether it was walking on cables, running on old car tires, keeping balance on strings or small wooden boards, hanging on to ropes above our heads, everyone needed to learn the techniques fast and applied carefully with the support of the whole team. It was almost like intensive gymnastics exercises. The most memorable obstacle is the one when we had to swing like Tarzan to reach a giant spider net and finish the whole chain of tasks. That last moment of victory would definitely stay in our hearts and minds for long after the training ended.

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Lunch break followed with a BBQ feast when everyone finally charged with new energy and connection to be a strong team for the next year. All members learned more about each other’s personal stories and experience when applying to GYLN and their expectations. There were also great suggestions for future work of the network. We held our hopes high for Sunwah GYLN as a place where great minds meet and we implement projects that will have lasting and sustainable impacts on society. We discussed about the vulnerable, disadvantaged groups and planned out some activities or events to help them develop their own potentials. But all great mission needs to start with solidarity within the team itself, this first training for the new generation of members served as a stepping stone for bigger and better moves for Hanoi Chapter of Sunwah Global Young Leaders Network.

31st July of 2016.

Reporter: Binh Minh

[Sunwah GYLN Hanoi] SUNWAH-VNU Model United Nations 2016

Date: 7th May 2016 – 8th May 2016
Venue: 2nd floor – ULIS – Jonathan KS Choi Culture Center, 144 Xuan Thuy, Cau Giay, Hanoi

In order to raise the awareness and responsibilities of students who will soon be the masters of the future to understand about the United Nations (UN) in general as well as to get acquainted with the ways and means this Organization is willing to solve the current problems of the world, Sunwah GYLN Hanoi Chapter organized the Sunwah-VNU Model United Nations (MUN) 2016 on the second floor of ULIS-Jonathan KS Choi Cultural Centre within two days on 7th and 8th May 2016 with the participation of more than 60 students from a wide range of universities in Hanoi.

To well prepare for the two-day meeting, an experience sharing session was held for potential delegates to understand more about rules of the program and to get inspired by distinguished guests, that were, Madame Nguyen Thi Nha – Ambassador of Vietnam, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, presently Honorary Consultant of Sunwah Foundation in Vietnam; and Mr Ngo Quang Xuan – a Member of the National Assembly and Ambassador to the Permanent Mission of Vietnam to the UN Office in Geneve and New York. Attending the sharing session were all potential delegates and observers. They raised various interesting and critical questions to both the organizers and the guest speakers. Importantly, after the event, they said that they got much more in-depth knowledge about the MUN, including diplomatic terminology to be used in and the rules of UN conference.

The sharing session led by Madame Nguyen Thi Nha, Ambassador of Vietnam, presently Honorary Consultant of Sunwah Foundation in Vietnam

A week later, the Sunwah-VNU Model United Nations officially took place at the ULIS – Jonathan KS Choi Cultural Centre. The simulation of UN conferences was divided into three meetings of sub-Committee United Nations Security Council, Economic and Financial Committee, and WHO Organization, held in three different meeting rooms.

The opening ceremony of the grand plenary session

At the United Nations Security Council forum, the delegates discussed and made decisions on prevalent issues the world had been facing such as Immigration & Migration, Military Intervention for Humanitarian Aids, etc. Chairing this council were Mr. Le Thanh Trung and Mr. Nguyen Quoc Anh.

United Nations Security Council

During the meeting of the Economic and Financial Committee, 20 delegates representing 20 nations jointly discussed about ‘Equal, Socially Cohesive, and Sustainable Urbanization’ and ‘Youth employment and entrepreneurship for sustainable development’. This council, chaired by Ms. To Minh Ngoc and Ms. Soya Bui, was nominated to be the best of Sunwah-VNU MUN since all delegates showed their efforts and close relationships with all others. In particular, some of Sunwah GYLN Hanoi Chapter members joined as delegates in this Council and competed and gained recognition for their performance.

Economic and Financial Committee

The last council was World Health Organization whose topic was about ‘Control and prevention of Non-communicable diseases’ and ‘Access to Universal Health Coverage’. WHO Organization was the only committee whose medium language of discussion and statements was Vietnamese. Because this council hosted the largest number of delegates in comparison with the other two, all topics and ideas were impressively and energetically brought to the table with good solutions. The delegates of this council still stayed in touch after the event through gatherings and various meaningful activities together.

World Health Organization

Many journalists from different online newspapers such as Zing.vn and VTV broadcasting came to the event to gather information for news entries. The GYLN itself reported this program to the Media Department of VNU and got publicity in the official website of VNU. Generally, this program succeeded far beyond expectation of the organizers for a networking event and a platform for students to practice leadership, public speaking and debating skills.

For the organizers, this program has been a strong drive for Sunwah GYLN Hanoi Chapter to continue its efforts and missions to build and uphold students’ leadership skills. We truly hope that under the support and sponsorship of Sunwah Foundation as well as Sunwah Group, we will be able to continue to conduct similar programs in the future.

[Hanoi Chapter]

[Sunwah GYLN Hong Kong] Sharing about the trip to Hanoi in Dec 2015

 

Dear fellow GYLN Hong Kong Chapter members,

Last week, three members from the Hong Kong chapter, Jacky, Jocelyn and I, we participated in the Hanoi International Gathering trip 2015. We met a diverse and enthusiastic team of members from Japan, Korea, Canada, Beijing, Macau, Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi. I would like to share with you some highlights of our trip in Hanoi.

On 20 Dec, the members from Hong Kong and Canadian Chapter successfully collaborated on a dancing performance in the opening ceremony of the Celebration of 45th Anniversary of Sunwah Group – Sunwah Project 45. The ceremony also kicked off the Sunwah VNU Social Services Day,IMG_7194 involving street-cleaning and wall-painting by 500 local students. We contributed in the event through painting colorful murals on walls. Not only did we brighten up the exterior of the school, but also built up connections and friendships with the local students. This shows that community projects can be powerful vehicles for making positive changes in the city.

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In the afternoon, we attended a session on leadership with Dr. Jonathan Choi, two professors from the University of Alberta, Canada and the University of Melbourne, Australia, and the Dean of Kyushu University. In the session, Dr. Choi addressed the importance of cross-cultural understanding and international cooperation to promote mankind’s peace and development. Members from each chapter also shared their commitment towards community building in their home countries and personal views on leadership. The session had been illuminating. As global young leaders, we must grapple with the challenges arise from cultural diversities to create a more integrated and open world. On 21 Dec, we had a GYLN meeting with members across chapters and discussed three main topics: the insights on leadership gained from the two videos (featuring Dominic Shellard, Vice Chancellor of De Montfort University, and Prof. C. N. Yang, Nobel Prize Winner in Physics), the management of each chapter, and the establishment of the GYLN website. In particular, there are some ideas about the management of each chapter and the GYLN website I find worth-sharing with you as follows:

About Chapter Management:

  • To draft and implement a constitution that best suits each chapter with regard to their distinctive characteristics;
  • To share the management strategies used in Sunwah Group;
  • To organize workshops and training for members in leading an organization;
  • To increase information-sharing and transparency across chapters;
  • To devise recruitment strategies that attract talented students across disciplines;
  • To improve alumni retention.

About GYLN Website:

  1. To build an external website which includes the newest updates and information of the project.
  2. To set up an internal portal for all members:
  • To facilitate better Communication (Forum+Chat room);
  • To facilitate Project Management (Virtual office, e.g Slack);
  • To provide Internal Training (Workshop videos of different places);
  • To showcase voluntary/ internship opportunities in different chapters.

At night, we were privileged to have a dinner with a successful Vietnamese woman leader Ms. Le Hoang Uyen Vy, who has been elected as one of the successful people under 30 by Forbes Vietnam. She founded Chon.vn, a leading fashion e-commence company in the country, and Aiya Limited Company, a restaurant chain which serves Vietnamese street food in a fine-dining atmosphere. Throughout the dinner, she shared with us her experience and gave us valuable advice. I greatly admired her confidence, foresight and undaunted pursuit of excellence as one of the pioneering female leaders in the business sector of Vietnam.

GYLN has served as an international platform for distinguished individuals to conduct multi-cultural perspective and meaningful dialogues.The Hanoi International Gathering trip 2015 was an extremely rewarding and interesting experience for me to engage with so many talented leaders. Wendy, a fellow member from Ho Chi Minh City chapter, has produced a video which captures some of our best moments in Hanoi.

I look forward to meeting all of you in January to share with you my fruitful exchange and work on our project “Hidden Gems in Hong Kong”.

 

Wishing you and your family a Happy New Year!

 

With warm Regards,

 

Sharon Ho

 

[Sunwah GYLN HCMC] Sunwah GYLN Summit 2015 in Hanoi

 

From 19th to 22nd December, we received the credibility to take part in a global summit for Sunwah GYLN’s members from 8 chapters: China, Canada, UK, Macau, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea and Vietnam. This was a precious opportunity for young future leaders to assemble and discuss the development of the Network.

In the trip, we gained a lot of practical experience that we would like to share for all of you.

Through our 4 full-day trip, we all felt really excited. In the opening ceremony of the Celebration of Sunwah Group’s 45th Anniversary in Viet Nam and Award Presentation to winners of the Photo Contest “Sunwah Project 45 – The Hidden Beauty of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City”, we got deeper information about Sunwah Group, Sunwah Foundation and its development throughout 45 years in Vietnam and the practical, precious values that Sunwah brought about to the community.

We were involved in the Sunwah – VNU Social Services Day 2015 with many exciting activities. In the afternoon, we focused on the “Leadership skills” and listened to Dr. Jonathan Choi’s sharing remarks. He mentioned the importance of language in the integration process. In terms of leadership, he stressed on communication and motivation. According to him, a good leader should be very influential and visionary. And we ourselves can become leaders and planners in the future.

On the next day, we participated in a discussion for expanding the network as well as how to develop and implement projects in the country-based networks. At dinner, we were so lucky to meet and exchange information with Ms. Le Hoang Uyen Vy, Founders of Chon.vn (now is Adayroi.com), one of the most successful women under 30 years old in Vietnam (by Forbes magazine).

According to Ms. Uyen Vy, the core value was not experience, but visionary and hard working. Her simple and practical message made all of us more motivated to dedicate.

Time flies away callously, while all the memories are still there. Besides the meetings, conferences and events, we also had time together for chatting, talking about the future, career and tasting delicious dishes. For those memories, we will keep them in our heart for a remarkable youth, a beautiful moment and part of our present.

 

 

 

[Sunwah GYLN DMU] Sunwah Global Young Leaders Network in A Diversified British University

—— De Montfort University Sunwah GYLN Recruitment Process

Various Student Societies

DSU (known as De Montfort University Student Union) has nearly 100 societies and you can join as many of these as you want. Those societies range from Academic study (law society, science society for example) to variously weird ones such as Harry Potter and Quidditch society.

This year, a new society member named Sunwah Foundation Global Young Leaders Network, DMU Chapter has joined the society list, aims at connecting world-wide young leaders to a mutual commitment in serving our communities and developing leadership skills through various social services activities.

Beijing inspired Sunwah GYLN DMU Chapter to initiate

At the end of May 2015, which just the year flipped away from the calendar, a group of 4 students from De Montfort University (short for DMU) flew to Beijing international airport, joined a one-week amazing Beijing international gathering trip with other Sunwah GYLN members from Japan, Hong Kong, China, Vietnam.

The other three fellow students are head-to-toe British, notwithstanding, they have been overwhelmingly thrilled by Beijing this international city but with abundant cultural heritage metropolitan atmosphere. After a whole week cultural exploration and mixture, every single of them showed a 100% positive feedback to me. “On the day we got to know we are chosen to go to China, I called Nathan very early in the morning and he was awakened by my phonecalls. I told him the news we would be going to China! And the better thing is are sponsored by Sunwah for this whole trip which is truly a surprise. But now after these 6 days, I know this is a lot lot lot better than we ever imagined before”, said Keira, the only British girl here in the group.

After back to Leicester, we met up at a café, and three of them came out setting up a Sunwah GYLN Chapter in DMU. Daniel generously offered he could help to register Sunwah GYLN DMU Chapter as a student society in student union. “Developing university new students’ leadership skills with those inspiring international trips, and achieved precious overseas friendships, that is definitely a catch to everyone”, said Daniel.

Conventional Society Day

As a campus convention, each academy year, the first Friday after international week would be Society Day. All of registered society from DSU are free to advertise from 9am to 4pm in the campus, and Sunwah GYLN is one of them as well.

On that day, nearly one hundred student societies—major chairmen/women set up their booths inside the DSU building, or locate the recruitment booth alongside the campus path, each by each, trying to squeeze themselves to anywhere nice and easier to grab attentions from new comers.

We organised a prominent and cosy booth next to the entrance gate to promote our unique concept of Sunwah GYLN DMU Chapter, with just a roll-up banner exhibiting Beijing International Gathering Trip pictures, flyers placed on the table to introduce ourselves to fresh university. Two student ambassadors from my side helped to show students around, told them more about our organisation and programme we have.

Gradually, time tick-tacked on the clock turned a very early morning to a sunset afternoon, I picked blank student sign-up sheet again and again (not just twice) from student union operating desk, and prudently saved every fully signing-up sheet on the table of GYLN DMU Chapter. Freshmen, senior pupils, local ones, students from Arabic regions, France, Far-east Japan, Korea, US, India, are all coming to ask what programme we are doing, and what the criteria are, after loads of delightful and causal talk, also plenty of brand promotion I subtly did to new students, predicting and analysing the next economic centre will be in Asia for next several years.

Surprising Outcome after Recruitment

Later at the end of this both exhausted and joyful recruitment day, I came back to my office and started to input information onto the computer, surprisingly found out we now were 216 applicants willing to join our GYLN DMU Chapter after just few hours.

Really feel blessed that we can make it today. Hereby, the next step for DMU Chapter is screening and interviewing all applicant students, still wait for good results for it.

[Sunwah GYLN DMU] Beijing Experience

 

— Keira Rounsley, DMU Chapter (UK)

This was the first time I had visited China and it’s fair to say it was a life changing cultural experience that has broadened my perspective. It was a great opportunity that I was blessed with. Meeting the other students was really fun, we had a lot to talk about including how different our cultures were and what we did for fun.

On our first day we attended the ceremony of the signing of the Jonathan KS Choi Cultural Centre and Business School at De Montfort University (DMU) between Sunwah and DMU at The 3eInternational School founded by Sunwah Foundation in Beijing. The 3e School also celebrated its 10th Anniversary on the event day. 3e School is incredible, the talent of speaking two different languages at such a young age was extremely impressive. It was then time to try Korean food for lunch. I really enjoyed the Korean food, it was very different from the food we have back home in England, however I did struggle with using chop-sticks, nevertheless, by the end of my trip I had managed to use them.

Afterwards we were lucky enough to go to the Beijing Olympic Park which was amazing! We visited the stadium, the swimming arena and had a walk around the park with an ice-cream in hand. Later that evening we went to dinner, the Mongolian food was just incredible and it was a great opportunity to try new things. Not only was the food good, the entertainment was brilliant and got us clapping along to the music.

 

Beijing Experience_1

We got to see many of the other cultural sights such as the Summer Palace and The Forbidden City. The colours and detail that had gone into the buildings was beautiful. Not only did we get to see these beautiful sights but we got to visit Peking University. This was such a good experience as we got the chance to see how different it was compared to our University back in England. The first thing I noticed that was different was the size, the University was huge. We also got the opportunity to go to the famous Wangfujing Street in the centre of Bejing, this is where Dan and Nathan both tried Scorpion and Cockroach, I was too scared to try it, though Dan and Nathan said that the Scorpion wasn’t too bad. It was after that we went down to Bar Street where we all relaxed with a cocktail and got to know each other that little bit better.

 

Sunwah Foundation GYLN- DMU Chapter (UK)

Working with other students from different countries in the Global Young Leaders Network Workshop really broadened our knowledge and stretched our creativity. It was an amazing opportunity and I would like to say a big thank you to The Sunwah Foundation for having us. We created memories that we will never forget and connections we hope to keep forever.

 

[Sunwah GYLN China] Participating in “Sunwah and Friends Social Services and Creativity Day 2015” — A wonderful Experience

 

–Guo Chuning, China Chapter

It was a great honor to participate in “Sunwah and Friends Social Services and Creativity Day 2015” and visited Sunwah’s coffee factory in Vietnam, which was a new experience for me.

Social Services and Creativity Day” had several activities, and our team mainly took part in “Creativity Marketing Competition for Promoting Sunwah Coffee”.The whole activity was fantastic, I couldn’t imagine that I had team mates from Hong Kong, Macao and Japan. We worked together to design our marketing strategies, coffee cups and a booth even before going to Vietnam. It was a little difficult for us to contact with each other in the beginning, but later we exchanged our ideas through WhatsApp and found it quite effective. After discussing for several days, we finally got the idea of serving different coffee for male and female coffee consumers, and we designed “coffee for him” and “coffee for her”, which was the key concept of our team.

HCMC university students’ top five marketing plans and booths were presented at the main event on that day. They were very good and competitive, the most interesting and creative thing happened to us just on the eve of the “Social Service and Creativity Day”. We came up with the idea of putting on a play in our presentation, which was really imaginative. I also acted in the play and I was happy to see our presentation and play go on well, and the people there liked it. It was a great success for us. We all understand that creating a unique and memorable experience for our customers is so important.

As to the coffee factory, I was really amazed that there were only 30 workers in that big factory, and every process had a specific machine, which made the factory become the most advanced in Vietnam. I also saw Robusta coffee beans, and learnt how to distinguish the good beans from the bad ones. That really helped me know the coffee industry better and motivate me to learn more about the coffee culture.

This trip is quite memorable and gave me memories. I met many friends from different parts of the world, learnt how to work well in a team and got an opportunity to develop our creativity and innovation. I am so grateful to take part in this activity, and I do want to say thanks to all people I met in HCMC.

[Sunwah GYLN Hanoi] Give a gift

 

Life continues in every corner. We have to keep going for a better life. The road ahead of Sunwah GYLN and little students would be bright, though it would be somewhat far with a lot of hardships BUT I firmly believe that all of us will go through it surely!

It’s hard to depict the feelings from the day I started to write the proposal till the day I got the approval of Ms. Betty for the plan. It isn’t easy at all actually. With a record number of meetings, considerations about the time, the schedule, excluding the less realistic proposals, we finally heard from my leader sister that after half a day of submitting, we officially got the approval for the plan. I virtually burst into tears, after a number of times wanting to quit, a lot of deadlines and odd things we have to care about. Finally, we made it! I immediately called my friends who worked on the proposal with me: “Oh my buddies, it’s about to come to reality, we have not wasted our effort!” I never imagined that I would have chance to become a leader of such a big project, a “happy but introvert” me, an “always want to learn new things but don’t dare to take the lead” me, without being a member of Sunwah GYLN.  How could I have had that chance otherwise? When would I exactly define myself, a young adult – part of Vietnam’s younger generation?

After having got the approval for the plan, we set out to carry it out.
Different from some previous projects, we planned to collect used clothes and books for children.  Just by some simple ways such as informing our acquaintances, sharing information on facebook, we got so much stuff
from these people. Some members of Sunwah GYLN even spent part of their own savings to buy socks and gloves for small chidlren. That’s really praiseworthy indeed! We spent about 3 days to arrange and buy stuff for the trip on the 27th. A little bit tired but we knew that we finally made it!

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GIVE A GIFT_2

 

The 27th  of  December- bright and early on a drizzling and freezing morning, we set out on our trip at 5:30 am with a high-spirited and elated state of mind. Outside was quite dark so some of us still took a short nap before getting ready for the warming-up part at 7:30. Thanks for Chi and Thai, we did have a lot of fun for the game of guessing riddles.

Passing through a distance of about 138 kilometers with roughly 4 hours on the coach, we finally set foot in Phong Minh Primary School. We were welcomed by the teachers with a lot of smiles and handshakes. Our representative gave a picture as a present to the school, we quickly moved to the place that the students stay! We were looking forward to seeing their eyes, to hearing from them their beloved greetings.
I was dying to see their skinny but gentle and smart faces!

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Standing in from of us right then were about 80 students of the age from grade 1 to grade 5. They did not stop running around the room until the teacher said: “Attention!”  (that works exactly the same in military). Our very first common impression was the students were so skinny, actually. At their age they should be much taller and fatter, but they are not! The teacher said: “They are their most beautiful clothes, they won’t dress like this except for special occasions.” That was very heart-breaking actually, but still, we were really well-respected, how grateful we felt at that moment!

 

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After a moment, the teachers assigned them to sit in position and started the part of playing game. Lady Claus Chi and Santa Claus Thai appeared again with a lot of stimulating games and quizzes. The children had never ever been such delighted. We love the innocent and carefree smiles. We hope that they would permanently wear such cheerful smiles whatever happens. Asking them “What is your dream?” We did receive a lot of surprisingly simple answers: “I wish I owned a new pen”; “I deeply wish I possessed a new school bag”; “I hope that I had a bike to go to school, walking’s sometimes really tired then.”  You guess what did we say to them? “Ok then, if you want to fulfill your dream, what should you do? ” “Just try to study harder and harder, your dream definitely comes true!”

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In the afternoon, we moved to the part of visiting 6 poorest households. We visited them one after the other. Each student has different family background. Some of them are handicapped, Some either lost their father or mother, some has their mother suffering from cancer. We talked and shared a lot about the stories. The sadness submerged deeply in our heart. We stand speechless, a sense of frustration quickly all rush in upon me. I was very aware of how privileged I’ve been through my life.

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Another plan was successfully closed that left behind a complicated blend of every single emotion possible – joy, sadness, hope, despair, pity, envy, gratitude, connection, and alienation – except pride (Dustin Lewis- An American Volunteer’s inspiration right after the trip). Whether more or less, we hope that we had brought happiness, a change in thinking or much more great was a new lease of life for people especially small students here. “Education is the key to unlock the golden door of life” Little kids, just bear in mind these words, all right? We hope to return Bac Giang soon to do more things for you!!! We are sure we shall meet soon, on the day that you are with a laurel on your head and the flying-colour on your faces, dears!

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[Sunwah GYLN Hanoi] Mid-Autumn Festival activity

 

On the occasion of Mid- Atumn Festival, the members of Sunwah GYLN Hanoi organized a charitable activity with the main objective was to visit the poor manual workers and the people who are living in difficult life condition around Hanoi City.

“Look around”

Sometimes we go so far to find people who are in need of help but forget the ones who really need sharing around us. Originating from this idea, a “look around” campaign within the GYLNers had started and come up with many good results.

The meaningful trips

In Vietnam, full-moon festival is the day when family members get together, enjoy moon cakes and wait for the moon to rise up. But for the poor manual workers that we met in Long Bien, Hanoi, there was no Mid- Autumn festival at all. They were immigrants from Bac Ninh province to Hanoi for earning their living. Both males and females were approximately 60 years old. Without stable jobs, they did not mind doing anything including hard works. We were all touched because at these ages, they should have rested and had a happy life together with  their family. We went and visited them at their rented rooms, all of them were in bad condition which had only enough space for a bed and it was really hot in summer. Being together in a room, we felt the familiar and close atmosphere when enjoying moon cakes and listening to them sharing their daily stories. “Rarely could we have a chance to welcome you, students, so we greatly appreciate your visit ”- a man’s saying had touched our hearts. Seeing the brighten smiles on their faces, we experienced the famous saying “Happiness lies in making others happy, in forsaking self-interest to bring joy to others.”

 

After saying goodbye to the friendly workers, we visited  Nguyen Khanh  Linh, a cerebral palsy patient. Born with the illness, Linh was not able to do almost anything. To cure her from illness, her parents  had to borrow money from relatives for her treatment. Unfortunately, there was not any sign of recovery. However, thanks to the relatives’ help, the parents could open a small grocery store. When we arrived at Linh’s house, the 12-years-old girl was lying on the floor. Her twinkle eyes and innocent smile broke our hearts. She should have been a lovely and intelligent girl as many friends at her ages if she wasn’t born under a unlucky star.

 

At the eSunwah GYLN Hanoi Mid-Autumn festival activity_1nd of the trip was a vegetable seller’s family, we first met her- Mrs. Duong with her 14-years-old son who had dropped out of school and were selling vegetable in an open air market. The harsh life did not just stop there. After four years working in Hanoi, her husband felt into temptation and soon became a drug addict. Consequently, the family’s possessions were gradually sold out to satisfy his craving for drugs. He finally was taken into a drug treatment centre, from then on, it was her responsibility to carry out the family burden. Listening to her story, we not only felt sympathy for her but also admired the woman with  full tolerance and austerity.

And what we have achieved from the activity

To many GYLN members, this activity brought us more meaningful experiences than what we had given. Understanding the life of the people in difficult circumstances, we certainly found motivation for to continue devoting our effort to social development. This reminds us of a Vietnamese famous song “to cast into the wind”…“To live one’s life, one needs a heart … to what end, do you know? To cast into the wind, to cast into the wind….”

 

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