SCHOLARSHIP DELIVERY FOR THE NEW SCHOOL YEAR
Every scholarship delivery trip to children always makes our SCC staff members thrilled and delighted. We are happy to bring happiness to the children as they start their new school year. Especially, there was the attendance of Mr. Paul Finnis – Director of SCC on this trip. Taking this chance, he would like to express his sincere appreciation and say goodbye to local authorities, as well as the children before leaving SCC.
At the beginning of September, Child Development Program’s staff members had visited three districts of Tien Giang province to give uniforms and celebrate the new school year for 228 students. Joy and happiness was undoubtedly revealed on every face when they received the scholarships.
During five days travelling around every corner from Tan Phuoc to Tan Phu Dong and Go Cong Dong, we had been through many feelings. We were happy when witnessing the development and improvement of Tien Giang’s economy. However, we were a bit down when seeing many children with smudgy faces, sunburned skins and ruffled sweaty hair. They did not have the proper care they deserved. Some on them even had to take on the responsibility of supporting their families. One example was a nine-year-old child we met. Instead of playing, he needed to help his father catch fish every day. Along the roads, we saw many billboards with slogans such as “Quitting school means giving up your future.” This must be one of many efforts of local authorities to encourage parents to keep their children in schools.
Unlike those living in big cities, the summer of children in rural areas was very simple with traditional games such as marbles, hopscotch, and stone tossing. Art/sport courses (drawing, martial art, swimming or music) or family away trips were something they had never heard about before. Their families were busy with fishing far away from big rivers. If they were hungry, they would have to fill themselves up with some cold rice and fried fish left over from early morning. The scholarship this time included some cloth for uniform and a small allowance for tailoring. Besides that, SCC supported the children with Accident Insurance as well. The reason behind was because these children were living in areas with many rivers and canals. This would provide the parents some peace of mind while going to work and leaving their active children at home.
When delivering the scholarships at 19 schools, we had a chance to understand more about the reasons why many students at 14 and 15 years of age are dropping out of school, legally able to work aged 15. There were many causes, but the most basic cause was poverty. With the mission “Eliminating Poverty through Education”, SCC’s programmes always consistently focus on this and on trying to keep children in school.
Education support is a long-term and continuous process. That is why our scholarships are open to students at all levels. In order to achieve this mission, SCC needs support from the community, companies, and individuals. Please visit http://www.saigonchildren.com/eng-child-development-programme.aspx for more details. If you would like to sponsor a child, please go to http://www.saigonchildren.com/our-children.aspx. All your support will be highly appreciated and contribute to positive change, though education for Vietnamese children in difficulties.
SCC Alumni Network’s update:
In 2012, SCC Alumni Network had its debut at Caravelle hotel to gather youngsters who are full of zeal and enthusiasm. Through this network, SCC expects to keep in touch and follow young people, as well as create opportunities for members help each other, because they will become role models of next generations. Based on this basis, together with Caravelle Hotel’s support, SCC Alumni Network had a warm and meaningful annual meeting on 26th of October 2014.
The meeting was a sharing about a topic named “My Path” with the participation of 3 guest speakers who were alumni from Child Develop Programme (CDP) and Development & Integration Programme (DIP). Mr. Tim Mullet – a new director of SCC also joined in the meeting and expressed encouragement and support to Alumni Network’s members. He said: “SCC is very proud of you all. We appreciate your efforts to overcome difficulties in life”, and gave advices on job interview and employment. The annual Alumni meeting 2014 ended with an expectation to bring helpful information to attendees.