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With an altitude of about 1000m above sea level, to get to Mu Cang Chai, we have to go through Khau Pha pass - one of the four great peaks of the Northwest Pass. From the center of Mu Cang Chai town, the road leading up to Lao Chai commune is winding and embracing the wind-swept waists, the higher we go, the more we can feel the bitter cold of the highland winter. Following the footsteps of teacher Duong Thi Lieu - Vice Principal of Lao Chai Secondary School for Ethnic Minorities, the group reaches the second school site on the journey to bring warmth to children in Yen Bai upland.



First impression is the politeness of the students. When seeing strangers arrive, they constantly nod and say hello, but as soon as they see the camera lens, they quickly turn away. According to the teacher, just a few days before the gifts were delivered, the children were very excited and anxious until the day the group come to visit. While the group are talking to the teachers to learn more about the teaching and learning conditions of the teachers and students, the children gather in the middle of the school yard. Some male students are busy helping the teachers to carry the confectionery, clothes. The atmosphere is bustling, the sound of children playing and calling each other echoes throughout the mountains and forests.

Overall, the school looks spacious, but the facilities, classrooms and living conditions of the teachers and students here are still difficult

Because the outdoor temperature is decreasing while the children are not dressed warm enough, the group quickly distributes the gifts for the children so they can return to their boarding houses, and some of the children going to class because it is their "shift". The school looks spacious from the outside, but the reality of the classrooms is still lacking. Students have to divide their shifts to study,and the teachers here have to use their personal money for construction and for their personal uses. Like a large yard that has just been poured with solid and clean concrete, it is also the work of the teachers and with the help from the parents as well. Ms. Lieu jokes: "The teachers here are both teachers and builders!"

Ms. Phung, on behalf of the charity group, gives a hot and cold water tower to the teachers

Crossing the steep road, both sides of the forest peach trees are in full bloom, we follow the students to the boarding house a few hundred meters away. It is said to be a model of a boarding house, but in fact, they live almost entirely at the school. The whole school currently has 8 boarding rooms, each room is about 50 square meters, no windows, dark, and only the door has light. Pile of clothes to dry, squeezed on steel wire. 25 bunk beds are set closely together. This is both a sleeping place, a place to play, and a place to study for more than 50 children. To move, one person must sit on the bed to make way for the other person to come through. The girls' housing is no better either. Priority is given to the 2-storey building, but the building is also deteriorating. Walls and ceilings are peeling off piece by piece. There is a bed, an aluminum box for storing things, and clothes covered on the iron bars of the balcony behind the house. Like many schools in this highland area, their biggest obstacle is sanitation. As mentioned, the current number of students has exceeded the construction scale and is expected to continue to increase, but the whole school has only one toilet for male and one for female.

Ms. Hien visits a boarding room for male students

According to Ms. Lieu, the previous scale invested in building the school was only for 200 children. Now, the number of students is up to 584 students. The rooms as well as the auxiliary works do not meet the demand. To have a place to live for the children, the school must convert the cafeteria into a living room and use the yard to make a place to eat, enough to cover the sun and rain.

The yard that used to be a place for children to play has now been used as a place for eating

Currently, teachers and students at Lao Chao Secondary School of Education and Training are gradually overcoming difficulties, and daily meals are also focused on by the school. The teachers organize for the children to grow vegetables, raise pigs, both to add to their daily meals and to practice life skills for themselves. It is known that the source of vegetables that teachers and students can grow themselves have provided 70% of the green vegetables of the kitchen, raising animals to improve meals for students or on holidays and Tet. On this occasion to visit the school, besides blankets, candies, warm clothes and plastic slippers for 584 students, Kien Vuong also contributes some essentials for the kitchen.

Ms. Lieu leads the group to visit the green vegetable garden for teachers and students to take care of every day.

We can't have enough strength to change the situation, overcome the difficulties for teachers and students, just hope to contribute with the teachers to "retain" the children to stay at the school to study properly, so that the students will be the ones to draw a bright future for themselves.

Leaving Lao Chai commune, on the way back across the road turning into Ta Ghenh village, we remember the image of teachers who come to class every day with their feet covered in mud. Then again, a contradictory concern arose: "Every time we visit a place that is really poor and difficult, we feel pity but at the same time we feel happy and sad, everyone understands, but we are glad that we find the right place, the right person, appear when they need us most. But saying that, many people think that we wish them to be poor."- Because of that thought, Mr. Qui and Ms. Hien always want to come to the places to know the actual situation, so that all the help can be brought with the most practical meaning.


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Somewhere on this S-shaped strip of land, there are still many miserable people that even if we have been there, we can only feel a part of their hard life. People often give the land of Ha Giang beautiful nouns such as "beautiful in the heart of the Tam Giac Mach flower season", "ideal roads", "beautiful scenery like paradise"... but perhaps nature That ideal and beautiful path is not for you - the hardy sprouts stretching themselves on the rock.


What do you see after the past volunteer trips? Is not seeing the things around that people call fame. Only see love when sharing each other pieces. Is it a piece of cake, a sweater or a pair of forest sandals. What do you see beside the cheers ? It's a picture of a 5-year-old boy carrying his brother who is thirsty for milk. In that area, people must find ways for a proper meal ? YES. That is right. The children in the highlands are still suffering!


With the help of Ha Tinh Provincial Youth Union, on August 26, Kien Vuong comes and hands over 300 sets of clothes, 300 plastic slippers and 3000 notebooks and sweets to poor students overcoming difficulties in 2 districts Thach Ha and Can Loc belong to Ha Tinh province. In order for timely gifts to reach children in the new school year, it is thanks to the cooperation with local authorities to search for students with difficult circumstances but have the will to study and practice well. The overriding goal is still to make sure the help goes to the right place, to the right person, and really means something to the recipients.