Saturday, November 15, 2008

Thao .............. chasing the dream

I would like to introduce you to a delightful young lady by the name of Thao, she has an interesting story….

Thao was raised by a very poor, and very devoted, single mother. To survive over the years they have collected rubbish and foraged through it to find anything that could possibly be recycled, sold or bartered for food. It’s been a tough road and Thao’s mother is now very ill with kidney failure.

Thao is a very bright young lady, even with the challenges of extreme poverty she has always enjoyed and focused on her study. During her difficult childhood years teachers would sometimes give her food, school supplies and encouragement to help her along the way. Recently Thao finished High School and she produced excellent grades.

Even though she has very limited options Thao has been chasing a dream, she wants to be a doctor. With her mother at her side she travelled to Hai Phuong to sit the admission examinations for Medical University. The exams were very difficult and Thao had the added distraction of fatigue and hunger because she hadn’t eaten for a few days, they had spent all of their money paying for travel expenses and a room to stay.

But still, she completed all the examinations ……. and she passed with flying colours!

She now faced the problem of financing six years of Medical University. After trying many avenues, all to no avail, a local reporter, also named Thao, picked up her story and widened the search for support. Eventually she came into contact with Dat and ACCV became a part of the picture.

So, along with Dat and Thao (reporter) we travelled to visit Thao (students) hometown, a small province outside of Hanoi. We met with her and her mother and let them know that ACCV would sponsor all of her education and living expenses for the next six years. When we spoke to her she discussed her reaction to receiving an offer to attend the university

“at first I cried because I had been successful, and then I cried because I realised I would never be able to afford to go …… and today I cry because I am so happy that I will be going”.

It was a lovely afternoon for us and certainly for Thao and her mother, it was all a bit surreal. As we made the lengthy journey back to our car we would occasionally look back. Each time we turned around, there was Thao, standing in the rain just smiling and waving at us. Not wanting to go back, just waving.

Imagine the doctor that Thao will become, and the many lives she will enhance in turn.

We’ll keep you updated on her progress, you can clearly see the huge changes your donations make to peoples lives. The story of Thao and ACCV also appeared in the Local Newspaper




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