Building Hope through Education in Vietnam

Post a Comment » Written on June 13th, 2011     
Filed under: Community Development
“Education is all a matter of building bridges”, Ralph Ellison, American Novelist, once wisely wrote. In Vietnam, Covenant World Relief is partnering with South East Asia Relief (SEAR) to provide vocational education to underprivileged adolescents. Through the project, the youth receive more than just an education; they have received a glimmer of hope. The program is geared for the youth in Vietnam that are surrounded by extreme poverty and have been forced to leave school because of the cost. SEAR gives the youth a means to provide for their families and the hope to aspire to be something more. For the youth, the program acts as a bridge out of poverty, a bridge of hope, and a glimpse of the gospel.

The adolescents in extreme poverty, often without parents, are overwhelmed by their circumstances and find themselves on the streets. The vocational training program strives to point the youth in a new direction. The program, presently, is moving toward the second year of training with this group of students. The duration of the program is two years, at the end the youth are ready for employment. Through SEAR, many of these youth are able to find stable jobs and have a promising future because of the education and training they receive. This project has already touched the lives of 20 youth, and one of them is Nam.

Nam is a sixteen year old girl that has learned the ins and outs of a beauty shop. She was helped with only twenty dollars per month and with that has received education she needs to run her own beauty shop and escape from the cycle of extreme poverty. Through education, they are given hope, a chance to step away from poverty, and a chance to take care of themselves, which radically changes the way they view themselves. Ultimately, the program prevents the youth from taking part in crime or sex work, and opens their eyes to a world in which they could fulfill their dreams. Through the program, their self-worth is changed dramatically. No longer viewing their lives as a waste and seeing that they can change their fate, they can dream and strive towards that dream.

To read more about the project, or to give to this education project, visit our website here.

Written by Xenia Gonzalez, NPU student and CWR intern.

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