You read our news about the programs regularly, but here is much better: come and see for yourself! I am extremely fortunate to live with the teams and to spend a lot of time in the villages. This gives me always an extra motivation to do even more. So we want to offer this opportunity to you!
We work in the 2 different regions in Vietnam : along the mountains of Bình Thuân, next to the sea side, and in the Mekong delta. We also work accross the border, in one of the poorest and most arid provinces of Cambodia, in a totally different cultural and political context. This is proposed program:
|1||Arrival in Saigon, hotel.|
|2||Wandering in the center of the city, poor and rich quarters.|
|Departure towards Bình Thuân : visit of extremely poor households, who have managed to get out of poverty: rabbit farms, model vegetable gardens, new techniques for paddy (less chemicals, higher profits), biogas, patchwork, production of incense sticks for export, action theatre to promote hygiene, waste recycling, promotion of cashew nuts for fair trade… Sharing the life of the local teams. Night in a local small but nice and clean guesthouse.|
|6||Hotel on the beach, facing the China Sea.|
|7||Return to Saigon: wandering by boat on the Saigon river, water puppets, meal with traditional music, the patchwork workshop and outlet etc.|
|Departure towards the Mekong delta. Small rural hotel. Meeting with peasants, pig farms, eel and earth worm raising: how the very poorest, who barely survived with 2 euros/week, could improve their condition, namely with micro credit. Health education in primary schools. The people build small roads and bridges to develop their village. Action theatre against alcoholism.|
|11||Travel by boat to Cambodia.|
|12||Visit of Phnom Penh, the Royal Palace, the museum.|
|13||Visit of 2 small Khmer NGOs: micro credit to provide cows to the poorest, irrigation, vegetable gardens… Night in a small hotel in the provincial town of Svay Riêng.|
|14||Visit of a group who tries to help the villagers to save their forest against pirates and speculators.|
|15||Return to Saigon and flight back home (unless you want to stay with us!).|
All travel would be in an air-conditionned mini bus Mercedes 15 seats. All hotels are air-conditionned. We aim at a group of 5 to 10: this would allow an excellent contact with the people and the teams, sometimes divided in smaller groups. Besides the air-ticket (approximately 900 euros from Europe) the cost is estimated at 500 euros for hotels, meals, and transport. Please tell us soon if you are interested!
We propose the period 10/2-15/3/2007 : no rain and not too hot. This is just after the Vietnamese Têt (new year)! Would you add a visit to Angkhor? To the Imperial city of Huê? We will give a quick feed back to every one who shows interest. Do not hesitate to make suggestions and to ask questions!
And after this trip? You will not leave us intact! Like us you will not be able to say no after meeting these wonderful women, who struggle always with a huge smile. We will be ready to assist you if you want to share your experience with your friends (documents, videos etc.).
Bernard KERVYN, 16/11/2006