The Fisher Village

The following brief article will give you an impression of what the Fisher Village is: " The Red River is the biggest river in Vietnam. The delta is located in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. The city continues to expand with many people coming from the countryside into the urban area. This however, is an expensive endeavor with the government imposing a tax on people coming from the rural area to prevent a massive influx of people. Some people decide, however, to come despite this financial situation and thus must live in house boats at the river to escape from having to pay. Since they do not technically live in Hanoi they must pay for school which is usually free until the age of 12. The entire family must work hours that most people would consider inhumane. The children wander the streets begging and collecting rubbish. An entire family barely makes 2$ a day."

The Red River Fisher Village:
  The people who live in boats on Hanoi's Red River come from many poor rural areas of Viet Nam. All of them are very poor and have been unable to find a job in their hometown. They come to the city hoping to get a job and earn more money to improve the lives of their children and family, however in the city everything is expensive and it is not easy to find work. The people do everything they can to support their families, getting money each day by collecting rubbish on the street and dumping ground, being carriers in Long Bien market, etc. They do not have enough money to rent a flat or house on the land in city so they have built boats out of rubbish and live in these on the Red River. Their boats are short-lived and unreliable, but when there is not enough money for food how can there be enough money to repair your boat? For this reason, we have organized a special work camp to help these people repair their “houses”.

 The Youth House School:
The Youth House School is a small education center for disadvantaged street children managed with the financial support of the French Student organization "Un ETAI pour le Vietnam". The volunteers who work here teach around 10 children everyday. They also have to cook lunch for the children and clean the Youth House together. Remember, the children are not used to rules and structure in their households, so volunteers must try to implement this by setting an example. The Youth House is also a place where young local people and international volunteers come to explore each other's cultures, by teaching the children together or organizing leisure activities, such as taking the children to the swimming pool.
We combine these activities with projects to help disadvantaged people at Fisher Village who are very poor and live in slum-boats on the Red river. We do this by giving the children and their families food, medicine, water filters (for clean drinking water), toothpaste, second-hand warm clothes and free showers in winter, etc.

 What do our local and international volunteers do ?
  • International volunteers give an English class from 9:00 am to 11:00 am, and one from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
  • Local volunteers teach the Vietnamese primary school program (Math, Vietnamese, History, Geography, etc)
  • International and local volunteers prepare free lunch for the children.
  • We provide emmergency accomodation for children and hot showers in winter.
  • We build and maintain water filters for the Fisher village residents. Our filters have been specially designed by the technology university of Hanoi.
  • We build and renovate the Fisher village boats (thanks to "Coup de Pouce" for the financial help).
  • Leisure and cultural activities for children.
  • Organizing free medical check-up in collaboration with the professors and students at Medecine university of Hanoi.

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