November 2010
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Volunteer English Teachers Urgently Needed!

Linh and her grandfather

I know that it’s been awhile since I’ve mentioned my volunteer work, and you’d be forgiven if you thought that I’d forgotten all about it. I am proud to say that I have kept up with it throughout my time here in Vietnam.  Recently, I’ve traveled to Vinh Long with a group of doctors and helped hand out free medication for the elderly and indigent; went to Thu Duc district with an NGO (Ngan Hac Giay) to feed and provide school supplies to poor “Khmer” children; also went with  NHG to give clothes, food and medicine to homeless people in Saigon in the wee hours of the morning.  In addition, I’ve been teaching English to disabled adults at DRD (Disability Resource and Development) and was involved in the establishment of an English club there.

However, as I am in the process of starting up not one, but two businesses in Saigon, I am afraid that I must for the foreseeable future concentrate on building my businesses and therefore will be unable to continue my volunteer work until things stabilize and I can free up more time.

At the moment, I am tutoring 2 female students here in Saigon, Binh and Linh.  Binh is a very sweet 22 year old lady who is physically disabled and Linh is a bright 10 year old year girl who was abandoned by her parents and is currently being cared for by her grandparents.  Both are from very poor families, and cannot afford to pay to attend a proper English school.  I hope to be able to find one or more persons to take over the tutoring sessions.

Binh’s English is actually at a very high level.  Her grammar is impeccable; she mainly has problems with speaking and listening comprehension.  I’ve been tutoring her twice a week on Mondays and Thursdays.  I spend 1 1/2 to 2 hours for each lesson.  Half of the time is spent practicing grammar, and the other half I just sit and converse with her.  She mostly needs someone to practice speaking with.  She is disabled and doesn’t really have any available means of transport since her parents both work.  She lives in District 8 and tutoring sessions would have to be done in her house.  She goes to school during afternoons on weekdays and weekends.  She is available from 8am-11am, Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

I was introduced to Binh by Co Bich, the supervisor at DRD.  It’s Co Bich’s desire that Binh’s English will improve enough that she can eventually take over English teaching duties at DRD, which would allow them to be less dependent on outside volunteers.  Another issue is that Binh’s father is elderly and the sole means of transport for Binh.  Unless he is driving her on his motorbike he has to carry Binh around on his back.  Co Bich fears what might happen if Binh’s father is one day unable to provide for and take care of his daughter…so we hope that by teaching Binh English,  we are able to instill in her the confidence and skills she will need to be able to obtain a good job in the future.  Binh has expressed an interest in applying for and attending college as soon as she is done with High School.

My other student Linh is a beginning English learner.  I have only been tutoring her once a week for the past month.  She is a very shy but bright  10 year old girl and has picked up a lot of English in just a few lessons.  As previously mentioned,  Linh’s parents abandoned her when she was a child and is currently in the care of her grandparents.  Her grandfather is in very poor health, with a severe case of diabetes.  Linh’s grandparents are obviously very proud of their granddaughter and want nothing more than to give her all the opportunities they can so that she can eventually rise from the poverty level they currently exist in.

Linh lives in Binh Tan district.  I have only had time to tutor her once a week.  I believe her schedule is flexible.  She should be available on weekends and most evenings.  Depending where you live, her grandparents might be able to drive Linh to your house/apartment to be tutored.

If anyone reading this can tutor or knows of someone that can tutor Binh and Linh please contact me ASAP.  They are both very enthusiastic and hard workers.  I hope to be able to free up some time in the future and continue to help these 2 very deserving young ladies, but until then I need someone that can generously devote some time to a very good cause.

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13 comments to Volunteer English Teachers Urgently Needed!

  • I wish you all the very best with this. Unfortunately at this stage I don’t have the available time to commit but I am sure with such a heartfelt request for such worthy people you will find someone willing and able to help. Good luck!

  • Anh Nguy?n

    I can help, call me ######### (ph# removed for privacy purposes)

  • Try contacting Helping Hand Saigon – they have a number of native speaker volunteers, and locals who speak exceptional English, who may be happy to commit some of their time.

    Good luck!

  • Mike

    I am very interested in doing volunteer work when I move to Vietnam in April. I have been taking from this life for over sixty years and now it is time to give back. I don’t know how I would be as an English teacher other than to read to students as I have no language skills in Vietnamese. What other types of services need volunteers? I’m sure that I will be doing some work with my church in Bao Lam, but in the meantime it would be cool to think about any opportunities or suggestions that you might have.

    • odgnut

      Hi Mike, I think most charities over here would welcome someone like you. It’s easy to get involved. You can walk into most orphanages, NGOs, NPOs and they will try to find something for you to do. If you are looking to Volunteer in Saigon, contact me and I will be happy point you in the right direction.

      • Sharing the Aloha

        Aloha Odgnut,

        I was researching VN visas and came across your site, very informative. Thanks much. Hope your business endeavors are going well.

        Does Linh & Binh still need any support (financially) to provide them English lessons/tutoring? It resonated with me with regards to Co Bich’s desires to have Binh teach English at DRD (for that is how we endeavor to provide assistance by giving a hand-up through education/tools for success instead of giving hand-outs).


  • Kim Nguyen

    I’m currently an English teacher in Ho Chi Minh City. I’m interested in tutoring anyone who is in need. Call me at 0908323098 and let me know how I can help.

  • Message to Kim Nguyen

    I would like to get in touch with you for my project in Vietnam.
    I need to set up a list of vietnamese translators based in Vietnam. you may recommend your students to sign up for jobs as a guide-interpreter (my first job 35 years ago), or as translator for the translation assignments. please visit my web on project yourvietnamexpert dot com.

    • Craig

      Anh Tho,

      Are you still looking for translators? I have a nephew in Saigon who may be interested. He is a college student, or maybe recently graduated. Let me know. I would love for him to have the opportunity to use his English skills.

  • Minh Tam

    Text to Anh Tho

    Please add me to your translator list (majoring in law) and contact me via my email address at [email protected] for further info. Thanks

  • Hi – Do you know of any organizations like the Christian Childrens Fund that sponsor kids health and education needs here in Vietnam?

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