On May 14, 2012 an amazing group of generous Australians visited the orphans.
Several months ago, we were contacted by Nicole of Australia. She said that she worked at a school, and that she wished to do something to help the orphans at Mai Am Anh Dao. Friends and colleagues of hers also wanted to get involved, and together they raised a sizable donation. Nicole and some friends planned to come to Nha Trang, visit the orphanage, and present their gifts to Sister An Son and the children.
We helped organize the trip, and had everything preordered for when they arrived. We met Nicole on Sunday, and spent the afternoon shopping for the children. When Monday arrived we discovered that the car we’d hired was too small to fit everything Nicole and friends had bought! We switched to a bus, loaded everything up, and drove up to the orphanage later in the morning.
We timed it pretty well, as all of the school-aged children were returning for lunch. As always, the kids were fantastic! They were so excited to see the many gifts brought to them with love and kindness. We spent some time hanging out with the children, playing with them and their new toys, and talking with Sister An Son.
When all of the gifts were stacked up, it was an impressive sight. All in all, the group brought 3 new bicycles, 4 new fans, new pillows, sleeping mats and blankets for all 60 children, school backpacks, school supplies (pencil cases, pens, crayons, rulers, etc.), diapers, baby formula, a tall stack of rice and noodles, plus boxes of dried fish, dried squid, and dried shrimp. They also brought new toys for the boys and girls, some hair accessories for the girls, plus snacks and balloons to make the visit festive.
Sister An Son was beside herself with joy, and the children couldn’t wait to get into the mountain of school supplies that were waiting for them. The group from Australia was touched by the children’s exuberance, and pledged to do more to help the orphanage in the future.
Joining Nicole were Linda, Janelle, Terry, Linda, Cate, and Amanda. Also contributing to this visit were the families and staff of the Cricklewood Child Care and Pre-School in Melbourne, Australia.
Thank you all for making a difference in the lives of these children!