This project has been a great blessing for the Phuong Thinh community and the participants as they managed to refurbishing 3 classrooms and an ECO Love House. This project cannot be completed without the hardwork of youth from Hall 14 Nanyang Technological University Singapore and volunteers from ECO Vietnam Group.
The project was conducted in Phương Thịnh commune, Cao Lãnh , Đồng Tháp District, Vietnam – where the common life is living with flood, poverty and making end meets days by days among difficulites in education , transportation any many more.
Morning 14.6.2012, volunteers form ECO Vietnam Group started the project by picking up our lovely Singaporean friends from Nanyang University of Technology . After months of working together online preparing for the project, it was pleasant to finally meet each others. The greating and welcoming were covered with delight and excitement for the journey we’d shared in the next few weeks in Phuong Thinh commune.
For almost all the volunteers, participating in Fire Up project was a new experience. They had the chance to work hard as a constructor. Things seemed to be easy at first turned to be extremely challenging, from carrying tons of bricks, mixing cement to bending iron and building walls, etc. Even though hardship existed in every works, our volunteers always showed the best attitude and responsibility. They pushed through all obstacles, ignored the burning sun, the unexpected rains to finish their job. What gave them the strength was the thought of a better life the people in Phuong Thinh would possibly have thanked to their hard-works.
Came to Phuong Thinh commune, at first it was understandable to expect the burning sun in here would shut down all the excitement and determine. Nonetheless, it only made our volunteers’ enthusiastic burned even brighter. Along with building house for the poor households, our volunteers in Fire Up project also re-furnished many classrooms for the young generation in Phuong Thinh. They put their hearts in every single works. Seeing them carefully painted doors by doors, planted trees by trees were precious scenery could be found during those days in Phuong Thinh commune.
Also in the project, our volunteers came and visited many poor households in Phuong Thinh commune. Each visit helped them to understand more of the harsh lives in this poor land.
Beside all the working hours during Fire Up project, the volunteers still found time to create many unforgettable memories together and with the lovely people in Phuong Thinh as well. From culture exchange stories during house-works to friendly football match with the commune’s boys , their friendship grew into a loving , unbreakable tie across countries.
After the project, although the weather condition was harsh and facilities weren’t any close enough, with loving hearts and volunteerism nature , our volunteers had planted 100 trees, re-furnished 3 schools, visited 3 households, taught English to poor children and built one ECO Love House. These contributions, even though are small but they are the start of hope for a better life, better future in Phuong Thinh. That’s the precious achievement all volunteers in Fire Up project did.
In the farewell party, all the kids in the commune and the volunteers were in the brink of tear for saying goodbye and soon be apart. However, knowing the love that the people in Phuong Thinh had for them, our volunteers started longing for the reunion day, one day, in the not so far future
“Fire Up” only lasted for 10 days, but all the things our volunteers left behind will forever stay in Phuong Thinh. A short journey in term of time but is endless in each individual mind. This is the journey that EVG volunteers and NTU students will never forget.