Hong Bang

Monday, 22 Apr 2019

Tram Anh OVTram Anh, 2008

I became an overseas volunteer for Hong Bang back in 2008.  My first volunteer site was at Tinh Thuong School, located in Buon Ma Thuot City, Daklak.  It was a special school which permitted only poor students from around the city.  There were five grade levels starting from first to fifth grade with about 130 students.  My job there was to teach English, tutored Math and Reading to third, fourth, and fifth graders.  While there, I had the opportunity to participate in a food drive to help the lepers in a rural area up on the mountain.  I also got the opportunity to visit a hospital nearby every other day to help distribute food to the mentally ill patients, and the HIV-infected patients.  Having to visit the HIV patients and witnessed the environment that they were living in, had left an image that I would never forget.  Buon Ma Thuot was an experience I would forever be grateful.

I have met so many unique and wonderful people and they had left many footprints in my life.  I love the kids at Tinh Thuong School, and cherished every moment I had with them. I felt privileged to share some of their hardships and was able to help some of them with their psychological and family issues.  After my time at Tinh Thuong, I was sent to Phuoc Loc, Vung Tau, to teach English to a group of young and talented students in the Quan Gia program.  I was fortunate once again to have walked a short distance and shared a small part of my life with all those gifted young ladies.  Viet Nam was a journey that would stay with me throughout my life.  It was more than what I was looking for and had hoped for.  I was and still am til this day, deeply grateful for the experience I have had with the people in VN.  As Ruth Smeltzer has stated, “You have not lived a perfect day, even though you have earned your money, unless you have done something for someone who will never be able to repay you.”  It was such a wonderful and a worthwhile experience that I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.