- ABOUT THE PROJECT:
- Apple Project
- Time : 21/11/2015 – 30/11/2015
- Place : Hòa Ân Commune, Cầu Kè District, Trà Vinh Province
- Participants: 20 students with 3 teacher of Yishun Junior College and 5 Vietnamese volunteers (including 1 EVG members)
+ Complete the building a toilet for students.
+ English teaching for local children
APPLE is the first project in a series of projects at Hòa Ân Commune and also the last project in project season of 2015, in association with 20 students with 3 teacher from Yishun Junior College, the official participation of 4 Vietnamese volunteers and the support of 1 EVG members, to teaching English and help complete the building a toilet for primary students – contributed to improve living & education condition of local residents, especially for the local children there, create conditions for development of education at local.
The main activities of this project include: build 1 new toilet and fix 2 old toilets, teach English for local children, do housework everyday and oraganise the Culture Exchange with local residents.
- ACTIVITY PROCESS:
- 13:00 pm, 4 Vietnamese volunteers with 1 EVG’s member and Mr Harry (EVG’s president) gathered at Tan Son Nhat airport.
- 15:00pm, Vietnamese team met and took picture with Singaporean volunteers at the airport.
- 7:00 pm, had dinner at Tín Thành, Trà Vinh Province
- 8:00 pm, checked-in at Hoàn Mỹ 2 hotel.
- 6:00 am, checked-out at Hoàn Mỹ 2 hotel.
- 7:00 am, started the trip to Hòa Ân , everyone had breakfast on the bus.
- 8:30 am, arrived at Hòa Ân, all members unloaded logistics to two hall together.
- 9:00 am, had a Wellcome Ceremony at Hòa Ân commune.
- 10:00 am, everyone was divided into 3 teams to set up a toilet and 2 hall.
- 12:00 pm, had first lunch at Hòa Ân.
- 13:00 pm, prepared and divided into 3 teams to ready for moving to the workplace : building team; teaching team and housework team.
- 13:30 pm, had the first a working session at Hòa Ân.
- 17:30 pm, had the dinner.
- 18:30 pm, bathing and resting time.
- 23/11/2015 – 27/11/2015:
The main jobs in 5 days here were: continue building and completing the new toilet, renew old toilets, teach English for local children ( primary school and secondary school) ; do housework; run Culture Night with local residents.
- Building the toilet
Building the toilet in Hoa An B primary school is the first experience of team. There are two small toilets in here but it was too old and downgraded for students to use. So bringing for them a new toilet was necessary. We had to build a new toilet for boys and restore two old toilets for girls.
In the afternoon of the first day in local, we went to the construction site, the walls of new toilet was being built to the sixth or seventh brick lines. And our mission was: continue put bricks to the walls, to plaster and whitewash the walls. Beside it, we had to make the sand to the same level, mix the cement, bring bricks and sand, clean the old toilets before restore it. Everybody was always full of energy for the days since we started. There were 7 or 8 people of S-team and 2 people of EVG-team for a construction day. We divided works for every small groups and began to do it. Then we changed for ensuring that everybody could try the same experiences.
Building the construction was harder than we thought. The first bricks which were putted were so clumsy and ramshackle. It was too difficult to get cement enough and put it in a straight line. We plastered the wall together, we tried our best to plaster up the wall but it could not. Mixing the cement or whitewash the walls has its own difficulties and it made us very embarrassed. After the building workers helped us to complete what we did, we yelled: “Wow!!! Oh no!! What is it?? That is great!!” “We are building or we are making it worse”. J. But everythings was better when we observed the building workers again and were instructed enthusiasm by them. Everybody made 100% effort in our works. So working is very hard but very happy when we worked together and saw the results after that.
But one problem was happened. We saw very a lot of garbage in here and were treatment by fire. So we had a discussion to solve the problem in that night. The days after, beside building, we had a team to collect the garbage and grass to one place to treatment. So we had a lot of things had to complete.
In breaks, although we were very tired but all people, especially S-team always went out and played with the primary student where we were building. The children in here are so cute, we very happy when played together. Difficult to understand, team and the children in here were very closely although we are different about language.
So building the toilet was a meaning thing, we had a lot of memories and lessons in here. We tried our best to contribute a little bit part and hope the students have a better life.
- Teaching English for local children
From Monday to Thursday: we have English teaching lessons, one class in the morning and one in the afternoon, each lasts for about two hours.
On Friday: we organize outdoor games for local children.
Teaching is a happy, interesting and joyful job. Having opportunities to meet, to teach,to play and work with the cutest kids must be the luckiest experience for each of us. The children are all cute, active and kind. Not just teaching, we also learned many important things from them, especially their spirit to learn, to find about new things, their spirit to win, to overcome all the barriers that make their learning not just easy as children with better conditions in other places.
Teaching was not a simple task. On the contrary, it was so difficult and complicated in many times.
Ø First, it was difficult to control the class well. They are all children, they are active and sometimes naughty and hyperactive. They just cannot concentrate on the lessons all the times.
Ø Second, because of language barriers between S-team and V-team, between S-team and the local children, sometimes the result is not good.
However, we improved this job day by day thanks to the reflection after each teaching session. We wanted to bring as much as knowledge that we could, because the children are really precious.
We focus on teaching them small and simple conversations and vocabulary. Besides, we tried creating games during the lesson with small and special gifts to attract them. Not only stopped at teaching English, we also taught them how to do good personal hygiene and Science.
Result : We made sure that after each lesson, at least 80% students can understand and remember what we taught, that they can be confident when have short conversation in English. Moreover, day by day, we are closer with the kids, not only taught, we also played with them after class, talked with them, sang with them. We understood them more and more, love them more and more. We made them understand that: everyone all loves them and hope them have better learning condition. Teaching activity was also a great chance for us : V-team and S-team became more closer, deleted our gap between us, helped us interact with each others more, and helped us have better teamwork.
This was done by a team included 4 to 5 S-team people and 1 EVG-team, we changed the team doing housework everyday so that they could try other works too. All we had to do were: fill full all tanks of water, turn off lights, help the “master chef” prepare and set up the tables for breakfast, lunch and dinner, wash dishes, clean two halls and toilet twice a day, sweep the yard, through the garbage… So we had to get up at 5:30am
All the logistics needed were well-provided by ECO Vietnam Group and local goverment. The works were divided to the team very clearly. EVG-team always instructed, found a lot of things to S-team do, and of course did it together. J We usually asked: “are you ok?” all people said: “ok”. But we knew they were always more tired when did the housework. J We made it by the ways as fun as possible. The living and activity environment were clean and met the requirements.
Results: All housework was done with high responsibility and willingness to cooperate.
- Culture night
From 5h30 pm to 6h00 pm, we serve dishes made by S-team to everyone.
The Culture Night was on stage from 6h00 pm to 8h00pm, and then Camp Fire till 9h30, with the attendance of Vice President of Hòa Ân Commune, Vice president of ECO Vietnam Group, local residents ( especially cute kids), V Team and S Team.
We had performances of the chidren, V-Team, S-team, a performance of both team.
Camp Fire was organized with enthusiasism and enjoyment of all people attended. We danced and played together in a warm and joyful atmosphere.
Result: The performances occurred in a warm and friendly atmosphere with a lot of laughs. All the kids and the people came and enjoyed the show and the Camp Fire. All the kids were given gifts. Security was well controlled. We all had a successful night.
- Thoughts about the project
Thought of Vietnamese volunteer of ECO Vietnam Group:
Before going to the project, each of us had learned and we were aware of the service model of ECO Earning Vietnam Group very much. However, all would have stopped the only theory if we hadn’t joined in volunteer trip in Tra Vinh. For each of us, although we were very tired but the trip was an experience a lot of the joy and pride.
We get a lot of the care and support from the local government as well as local people, especially M.s Linh, during the day project implementation. After Culture Night, water ran out but all volunteers of Vietnam hadn’t the bath, a police of commune led us went to the house of Ms. Diem’s parent. Here, we got a chat and know more about the condition of her parent as well as the people here. They gave us the gift of the village they had.
During the days of the project activities, we like to be grown up, matured through each day and really understand deeply about service learning model. We have learned a lot from the experiences we have been in this project and it will help for our steps in the future easier.
Thank organization EVG gave us the chance to participate in this trip and has joined with us to prepare for 1511project. Thank local government, local residents of Hoa An helped us as well as the affection of them for us. And also thank students with teachers from Yishun Junior College school always work closely with us to complete the project in the best way.
Thought of Diễm, Vietnamese volunteer of ECO Vietnam Group:
Before the project began operating, I have always been obsessed by the thought, the worry of myself, although there are silly worries. During the first day of the project, Singapore team, local residents and other members of Vietnam team proved to me that all my worries are in vain.
Later that day, along with everyone, I have a lot more confidence. All of us have actively to create the topic to talk together, a chance to know more and more about each other. Really happy when we understand each other in all actions. Overall, I think Singapore friends are really lovely, estimable and extremely cute. Hopefully, we will have the chance to see them again.
We really liked the people here and really thankful them when they always ready to help us when we need a help, grateful for the sentiments of the people here for us, especially the students. They often went to the place we had work to talking with us, playing and propose with us for them to work together. I still remember the last afternoon when we finished the teaching and building, after school, all children went to the committee and bicycle closed the entrance, car of 16-seat should not be parked in the road outside the committee.
I grew up a lot during the project, on a day has passed when I acted to improve myself, simultaneously, I discovered the problem in myself, then I thought of the action to solve the problem to come the next day I was acting along my thought. Just like that, I’ve learned so many things that even I did not think about before.
I am relly want to sent thanks to the organizing EVG, thanks for Singapore friends as well as locals and especially thank the members of the EVG team give me the opportunity to explore and develop myself more than what I hoped.
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But not end of life! Keep moving forward! And you’ll see!