It seems a lifetime ago that I visited the British Vietnamese International School (BVIS), in reality it was just a week ago!
The school were hosting a community day and I was invited in to share my story and take part in activities with the children.
The morning started in the large assembly hall where I stood in front of a sea of children, ranging from 4-14 years old, all wearing their house t shirts (Hanoi, Hue, Dalat and Saigon), I will be visiting 3 out of these 4 places on my run. I will only go to Dalat if I get very very lost!
The amazingly confident community leaders gave an overview of the day to the huge audience and then introduced me. I was so impressed with the standard of public speaking from these young teenagers.
I started by getting all of the kids up on their feet for a morning wake up aerobics session. I recruited some children to join me on the stage as well as some of leadership team. Who participated with gusto!
After completing the warm up I explained my running challenge and my reasons for wanting to try and make a difference to the lives of some local children. Following this, was the BIG NAM RUNS NAM QUIZ! The children competed in their house teams, worked beautifully together and really enjoyed banging the buzzers! I was really pleased that the children were able to answer all of the questions and reflect on what they had heard in my presentation.
I ended the assembly by asking the children to guess what I had in my running backpack. There were some really great guesses including, medical kit, hat, water and a map.
Before I left the assembly, I was presented with ‘Viet’ the water buffalo. Viet is the symbol for ‘Vietnamese Perspective’ which plays a huge role in the ethos of the school due to its duel language curriculum and the fact that the majority of the students are Vietnamese. Viet is now safely stored in my backpack and is enjoying the journey so far. Here he is enjoying his morning Pho. Expect to hear more from him soon!
Following the assembly, the children continued to work in mixed age group houses to complete community based challenges including; making a giant city out of scrap materials where they had to ensure they included all the necessary amenities. When speaking to the children during their learning, they described how all children should have schools, parks, hospitals and homes. I absolutely agree with them!
Through donations from this community day, BVIS children and staff raised an amazing £1380 (39500000 VND). An outstanding total for a fabulous cause!
A huge thank you to all the staff (especially Rosy, Ollie, Nga and Georgina) and, most importantly, the children at BVIS for letting me talk to you and join in with your community day, I had a great time!
Thanks for reading. Please share my page and donate as little or as much as you can.
Love Naomi (aka Nam)