PROJECT “SHINE” 19/5 – 25/5/2012
Phương Thịnh Commune, Cao Lãnh, Đồng Tháp, Vietnam
This project is a start of a new collaboration between EVG and Paya Lebar Methodist High School from Singapore. They had executed many educational and cultural activities in Phuong Thinh, Cao Lanh, Dong Thap before. Through this project, a new cooperation is formed and EVG is able to extend its influence in Singapore.
From 19/5/2012 to 25/5/2012, project SHINE hosted by ECO Vietnam Group (EVG) in cooperation with Paya Lebar Methodist Girls High School, Singapore was excitedly conducted in Phương Thịnh commune, Cao Lãnh, Đồng Tháp District, Vietnam with the mission to help and improve life condition in Phuong Thinh commune.
In 7 days, with much enthusiastic, determination and the thrust to build and develop the community in Phuong Thinh, almost 70 volunteers from EVG and Paya Lebar High School had did so many meaningful and genuine benefit for the lives in Phuong Thinh. Namely: visiting poor households, teaching English to children, fixing 3 classrooms, making 1km road.
In the first day in this commune, the volunteers immediately threw themselves in the hard-working routine of the project. They, first, came and visited poor households in the area. In which, not only did they gave away in need facilities to the families but they also built a loving connection with the people in Phuong Thinh – those they would help during their stay.
In the next days, the volunteers opened several Engligh classes for the children which gave a good impression to Phuong Thinh’s people, especially, the young ones. With active and friendly education methods, the classed had attracted many young students to join enthusiastically.
Also in Project SHINE, they had fixed and re-furnished 3 in order to create a comfortable and safe study environment for the students. Troubles were inevitable due to lack of experiences and other objective factors, yet, our volunteer were forbearing and determine to complete their jobs as best as possible.
This spirit was even higher and stronger when the volunteers making the road for Phuong Thinh commune. Under the burning summer sun, the girls from trường Paya Lebar High School together with volunteers form EVG had completed 1km road with the hope that there would be no more accident in the old slippery road during monsoon seasons.
Beside all the daily works during the project, the volunteers of project Shine also organized a culture exchange night with Phuong Thinh commune. Songs were sang in harmorny of new friendship and food was shared with family love .This marked the started of a long term and precious friendship between EVG volunteers and Singaporean volunteers as well as the lovely people in Phuong Thinh commune, the friendship that they will cheerish for their whole lives.
The last day finally came, saying goodbye to Phuong Thinh commune with the promise to come back , our volunteers headed to Cu Chi Tunnel and several famous spots in Ho Chi Minh City – The Notre Dame Church, War remnant museum and Ben Thanh Market. Thanked to which, we had a chance to introduce Vietnamese history and culture to our Singaporean friends.
Closing one week full of voluntarism spirit and hard works, there were time of tiredness and dispiritedness; however, our volunteers with their loving heart, undefeatable determination had portrayed the much inspirational image of a true volunteer. It is the unwavering, energetic, forbearing and compassionate spirit.
Departed from the project, what left in each volunteer’s shoulder was not just a backpack but also the priceless lessons and friendships they gained from this experience, which , they will carry for the rest of their lives.