In early January 2020 we visited the Song Lo Orphanage for Tet. The lunar new year, Tet, is the biggest holiday in Vietnam. Traditional foods and red envelopes are all part of the Tet celebration. We spoke with the nuns at Song Lo about bringing general supplies and got an early start for Tet, as the weeks leading up to Tet see prices on everything skyrocket.

When our team arrived, the little ones were quick to help carry everything into the common room. Our general supplies included packages of vegan seasonings, dried bamboo, packages of breading, yogurt, juice boxes, cans of sardines, bags of bean varieties, toiletries, baby diapers, and laundry detergent.

For the orphanage’s Tet celebration, all of the children got new clothes to welcome the new year. We then had a lovely lunch with drinks, yummy food, and traditional Tet snacks. We also handed out red envelopes of lucky money to all the children. A fun visit!


The history of the Song Lo Orphanage’s beginnings is heartwarming. As the story goes, a Buddhist monk was travelling in the countryside when he encountered a woman who said she could not care for her 2 children. She left the babies with the monk and fled. Not expecting to have 2 babies to care for, the monk made his way to the Song Lo pagoda, and the head nun at the pagoda, Sister Cat, agreed to care for the children. From that point on, orphans have been either brought to the pagoda, or abandoned at their gates. Formed in 2012, the Song Lo Orphanage cares for a small group of young children. Located adjacent the Son Lo pagoda, it’s a small facility deep in the countryside west of Nha Trang.