Living in Winston-Salem, I had heard about Children of Vietnam for years before learning more and finally joining in their relief effort. Do not be fooled by this small Greensboro based organization -- it has a wide and lasting reach into the most desperate and impoverished communities of Vietnam.
On a recent bike tour, I witnessed the fruits of 20 years of faithful partnership in providing relief and hope to children, women, and families. I toured schools COV supports, designed for individuals with special needs including those affected by Agent Orange. I shared lunch with Kindergartners whose classrooms were built by the generosity of COV supporters. I met with families who had access to clean drinking water and who climbed out of the poverty cycle because of COV micro-loans to launch small businesses, support their family and educate their children.
COV is doing more than relief work, they are providing a hopeful alternative to enrich lives and eradicate the systemic and widespread poverty of a beautiful nation and people.
Rarely do you encounter a charitable organization and its support team that truly stand out for its cause. Children of Vietnam (COV) does that and much more! Started as a grass roots effort based on the desire to help Vietnam and its people, especially the children with basic needs. This organization is exceptional in that you can visit the kindergarten you donated and can travel with key staff members to meet the beneficiaries of various COV efforts. Newer COV programs such as Empowering Foundations for Women and Their Children are exceptional in providing sustainable projects to charitable relief efforts. This organization is truly driven by passion and the desire to help others. Check it out!
I got involved with COV several years ago when I was given the opportunity to intern with the organization during as a part of my Masters program. Their unique mission is what initially interested me but their great work is what has kept me involved over the last few years. COV works to provide bright futures for thousands of children by educating, healing, sheltering and nurturing them. The organization is very well run and respected for the results they achieve.
I recently got the opportunity to travel to Vietnam and participated in a fundraising cycling tour with COV. We visited a daycare center for victims of agent orange where Children of Vietnam provides funding for a community garden as well as healthcare and special therapies for the kids, a kindergarten built by COV and where they provide vitamin fortified meals for the students, and a center for children with disabilities where COV works with the children, their parents, and their doctors to come up with an individual care plan for each child.
All of this is only the tip of the iceberg of what COV does to care for these kids. It was wonderful to see how well thought out programs and carefully spent dollars are changing the lives of the most disadvantaged and poor children and families in Vietnam. You can be sure that any donations given to Children of Vietnam will have a real, meaningful, and lasting impact on the lives of many!
I am a veteran of the Viet Nam war and I travel to Viet Nam annually to volunteer in medical missions. I am aware of the work being done by Children of Vietnam in the central highlands. These are areas of great need and Children of Vietnam is meeting a tremendous purpose. The variety and diversity of their programs is helping children, single mothers, and others in this underserved area. I commend them highly.
I recently traveled to Vietnam and participated in a fundraising cycling tour with Children of Vietnam. We met many beneficiaries of COV services, from victims of Agent Orange, to children with mental and physical disabilities, to single mothers who received education and micro-loans to start their own businesses and lift their families out of poverty. It was so wonderful to see how well thought out programs and carefully spent dollars are changing the lives of the most disadvantaged and poor children and families in Vietnam. You can be sure that any donations given to Children of Vietnam will have a real, meaningful, and lasting impact on the lives of many!
I am so proud to be a donor to Children of Vietnam. In 2014, I traveled to Danang, Vietnam and had the privilege to personally see the incredible work they do. I met and visited with women and their children who participate in COV programs. The lives of these families have been forever changed. One group of women I visited were participants in the "Empowerment Program". After a careful needs assessment, COV provides them assistance with nutrition and living conditions, healthcare, education and micro loans. The women I met went from poverty and hunger to starting their own businesses, feeding their families, and keeping their children in school. And follow up by COV confirms the continued success of these women. It is amazing at how thoughtful programs and well spent money can break the cycle of poverty and effect permanent change. It was truly amazing to witness first hand. I can't say enough good things about this organization and their staff. I'm so glad to be a donor to Children of Vietnam.
This past March I participated in the Children of Vietnam Cycling Out Child Poverty 20th Anniversary ride. Through this experience I was able to meet many of the board members, U.S.-based and Vietnamese-based staff, who helped to introduce us to many of the wonderful projects that COV sponsors throughout the country. It was an incredibly moving experience to meet such dedicated individuals and to see the impact that the organization has on children through schools and communities through a variety of nutrition, scholarship, medical and empowerment programs. It was clear, that as an organization COV has developed many meaningful relationships with local community leaders, private businesses, and government officials that allow them to maximize the impact of donations to benefit Children of Vietnam!
When I traveled to Vietnam four years ago, I had the opportunity to visit the Da Nang office of Children of Vietnam. They have a very dedicated staff who work with poor women and their children by helping them to secure safe housing, provide nutritious meals, access medical care, receive school scholarships and empower women through micro-loans and job training. Visiting women and children who had benefitted from Children of Vietnam's support was transformative for me. I have stayed in contact with COV since that visit and even rode my bike in Vietnam with a group in March 2018 to raise funds for their programs and projects. Fantastic organization!
I have been a COV donor for about four years. Earlier this year, I got to participate in COV's annual bike ride fundraiser, "Cycling Out Child Poverty." Besides having a great time exploring some of Vietnam's cultural heritage sites, I was able to see a lot of the work COV does on the ground in Central Vietnam -- from building kindergartens and providing meals for them, to helping community organizations that work with children with disabilities, and empowering single mothers with micro-loans. I can say that I was very impressed with the work, the staff, and what COV is able to do to stretch its resources. The impact of the organization is real, and this was affirmed by many local community leaders we spoke with, and who presented at the 20th anniversary banquet. COV is doing fantastic work and changing lives.
Children of Vietnam deserves kudos for all its good deeds helping kids in Vietnam. I and a friend have pledged a six-figure matching grant to build 15 kindergartens for Co Tu minority children in Vietnam who live in rural areas near the Laos border. COV builds and equips the kindergartens, then the local community hires and pays a qualified teacher and pays all future building maintenance costs.
COV also provides bicycles, tutoring programs, programs to help low-income parents and more. It is my favorite charity! Dr. Larry Hungerford
I first got involved with Children of Vietnam in summer 2011 as a fellow in the Asian American Pacific Islander in Philanthropy's cohort of VIETFellows--a group comprised of 2nd generation Vietnamese Americans learning about the history of Agent Orange in Vietnam and its disastrous effects on communities exposed to the deadly dioxin even 40 years after the end of the war. It was through my placement with COV and time spent in the Hope System of Care program that I came to respect how much impact a small group of dedicated staff from a small non governmental organization can make in the lives of so many vulnerable children with disabilities (CWD) and their families living in remote areas of Da Nang City, Vietnam. The staff of COV, and especially my supervisor in the Hope System of Care program, astounded me with the energy they put into their work and the genuine strides they took to ensure that those in a position to do something about the welfare of CWD were doing something no matter how small the effort. I left COV in late 2011 believing a brighter future was possible for these children thanks to the efforts of COV, its allies in Da Nang, and supporters around the world.
Fast forward years later and my and COV's paths cross once again when I was hired to become their grants & administration assistant. With even more privy to the internal operations of the organization, I find myself astonished on an almost daily basis by how far strong vision, leadership, and belief in a mission can sustain an organization and lead them to do the great things COV has done in its 20 year history. Without being bias, I can honestly speak to the integrity and compassion of COV's leadership evident by the network of steadfast donors and supporters who continue to build brighter futures for the children of Vietnam with COV through their time and monetary gifts.
Children of Vietnam does incredible work with a population that so very much needs our assistance. The staff cares so much about the Vietnamese children and goes beyond its donations and generosity with frequent trips to Vietnam to visit the areas in most need and work directly with the families benefiting from their terrific work. As a parent who adopted a boy from Vietnam with hearing loss, they have worked with us to focus on assisting children with special needs, particularly those with hearing impairments.
I've been working with Children of Vietnam now for almost 7 years and have had the privilege of visiting their programs on the ground 3 times. The COV staff are so passionate and knowledgeable and you can tell that they really care deeply for those that they serve. They are always trying to find ways to give a hand up, not a hand out. I've seen the work they do first hand, and the smiles on the children's faces in kindergarten show you how much COV means to them. I'm also so excited about their Empowerment through Enterprise project that they are doing with Rise Against Hunger. I was able to attend a workshop for that program and got to see how much the lesson impacted the women enrolled. COV is a great steward of any donation and they are working hard to make the biggest impact that they can on the people of Vietnam. I highly recommend them for anyone looking to give!
Everyone is a bit skeptical about donating to a cause that they have not personally been involved with. I can understand because I felt the same way. When I became aware of Children of Vietnam several years ago I wanted to check it out to make sure the funds were being used as stated. I found out that COV had been approved to participate in the Federal n Combined Federal Campaign Fund (Federal workplace donations). This status helped me feel more comfortable donating money to COV. Since then, I have continued my donations to COV for many years, and I am certain that the money I donate is used judiciously and prudently. The COV newsletter keeps me informed of current projects in the DaNang area. I have participated in several fund raisers and have encouraged my friends and family to donate to COV.
Recently, I have become even more involved with COV as a volunteer. This experience has provided me more insight into Children of Vietnam. I have found the individuals involved to be extremely caring and compassionate. They are focused on COV's mission of building bright futures for the vulnerable children of Vietnam.
I was recently able to visit Children of Vietnam's in country office in Da Nang, Vietnam. Children of Vietnam supports children in poverty in Da Nang and Quangnam province. Seeing first hand how the organization functions was eye opening to say the least. I was impressed at the number of children directly assisted by COV- who provides funds for school tuition, books and uniforms to over 600 school children. Seeing the children's faces as they received their scholarships made the trip worthwhile. It was interesting to find that many of the parents attended the scholarship presentations- I realized how much they relied on COV help with their children's education.
I was privileged to observe Children of Vietnam's Hope System of Care program first hand at the annual evaluation day. Here medical professionals, educators and families with handicapped children are brought together with COV specialists to produce an annual plan to assist the children in all ways possible. This is a much needed program as the local government services are not sufficient to take care of these afflicted children.
COV has harnessed the best services available to support a wide variety of deserving children. The local COV staff are dedicated as well as professional. I am certain that the funds raised for Children of Vietnam efforts are meticulously administered to provide the best results possible. COV is an agency of positive change in DaNang and the surrounding province.
Almost 20 years ago my father founded Children of Vietnam. He fell in love with the children that were in need in that country after working there for several years. I have traveled to the country twice and have participated in numerous fundraisers for the organization. I feel strongly about doing this because I feel smaller charities need our support. They spend much less money from donors on administrative costs that the vast majority of larger charities. For years my father hand wrote thank you notes to anyone that donated, whether it was $10 or $10,000. He, as well as Huong Luong, the Country Director in Vietnam, and many other volunteers have poured theirs hearts into this charity. For that reason, I am determined to do what I can to help it thrive in the future. If you are reading this as a potential donor, please make the decision to support this group. You will not find a more dedicated charity anywhere. Elliott WIlson
It was our son who first introduced us to Children of Vietnam.
John was in freshman year at the University of Wisconsin in Madison when he began to support Children of Vietnam through selling his mixtapes during free hours on campus.
John was mixed race. His mother was Vietnamese and his father, German/Irish descent. At an early age John was drawn to Hip-Hop as a means of self expression and identity. He produced many videos which can be seen on YouTube under John Vietnam. A name he chose to express his heritage. After his untimely death, we learned of his involvement with this charitable organization which now carries an educational fund bearing his name.
Over the past five years, we have seen the benefits produced through our donations by constant updates and photographs provided by the organization on their website and Facebook page. We have seen structures built, school supplies, desks and bicycles provided so that these children might gain an education, as well as medical and hygienic access, otherwise unavailable due to family finances or location.
Although John is gone, his legacy remains and his family and friends continue to support the work of Children of Vietnam. We highly recommend and encourage others to do so also.
I have been making contributions to Children of Vietnam for about one year. In September 2016 I was in Vietnam traveling and doing volunteer work. I was very fortunate that I was able to spend a day traveling with Nancy Letteri the executive director of Children of Vietnam and some of her Vietnamese staff members.
I found Nancy Letteri to be an extremely capable and compassionate leader. I know that she volunteered at Children of Vietnam for several years before she became the executive director. I also met several of the Vietnamese staff and found them to be dedicated, thoughtful and efficient.
During the day of our travel we visited an orphanage which COV supports. We were able to speak with students there who were getting tutoring from adults who were paid by COV.
These tutors had previously been provided scholarships so they could obtain degrees and now they were tutoring young orphans. I also got to interact with a little girl who had been found abandoned and malnourished. In the month she had been at the orphanage she had gained weight and she touched all of our hearts with her beautiful smile.
We also visited a small business woman who is being helped financially in order to be able to support your family. Near the end of the day we visited a government building where children of Vietnam awarded grants/scholarships to children from impoverished families. I was given the privilege of going on stage to present some of these grants. It was a beautiful experience of getting smiles and thank you's in Vietnamese and the best moment was when a tiny boy looked up at me and said "thank you"in perfect English.
I was in the military in Vietnam during 1968 and 1969 and spend a great deal of time interacting with Vietnamese in villages and working with Vietnamese soldiers and civilians. During this time I witnessed a great deal of poverty and hardship. Still today many challenges face the poor of Vietnam. The programs COV embraces range from providing micro loans, providing healthcare and nutrition, scholarships, and even bicycles so children can get to school. Children of Vietnam provides for the basic necessities of people, especially children, who are in critical need.
I believe their organization is extremely effective at using the resources available to assist the children. I will continue to support them and encourage anyone who wants to help deserving children to contribute to this compassionate and effective organization.
I wholeheartedly endorse Children of Vietnam because it is led by people of integrity and provides critical help to those who have so little.
My wife and I visited a special event in rural Quang Nam Province, southwest of the city of Da Nang, in Vietnam, for some of the children supported by the Dragoon Scholarship Fund, which is administered by the Children of Vietnam NGO. We support one 7th grade student and got to meet Thanh for the first time. She was very personable and appreciative and we look forward to seeing her next year at the annual "Chocolate Ceremony" on March 11, 2018.
I recently had the opportunity to personally meet staff members of the Children of Vietnam and to learn more about the various COV projects that are enhancing the lives of children and families in Vietnam. There is no doubt in my mind that the success of these programs is due in large part to the passion and dedication that the staff brings to their work.
But success requires more than passion and dedication, it also requires sound administrative practices. I was in Vietnam to attend a scholarship event and it was there that I witnessed the staff’s oversight and hands-on attention to detail that ensures that donations are put to their most efficient use for the ultimate, long-term wellbeing of the children.
My memories of that day in Vietnam will first and foremost be of the smiling faces of the children and the hospitality shown to us by the villagers where these children live but not far behind will be my feelings of respect and admiration for the Children of Vietnam and for their wonderful, selfless efforts.
I recently returned from spending a week with Children of Vietnam staff and board members in and around DaNang, where COV is uplifting so many lives. COV micro loans and training enable single mothers we met to emerge from despair to become owners of thriving small enterprises, able to feed and support their children. COV university and public school scholarships enable impoverished students we met access to skills and job opportunities that can lift their families out of poverty. COV creates hopeful life possibilities for children we met in a school for students with physical and cognitive disabilities, many exhibiting abnormalities typical of the multigenerational genetic impact of exposure to dioxin in Agent Orange, an herbicide American aircraft sprayed over millions of acres in Vietnam. COV distributes food to orphanages, hospitals and kindergartens. We went to the opening of a newly-constructed kindergarten classroom in a remote indigenous village, this one built with funds donated by a board member there with his daughter, all of us enjoying the songs and laughter of the children. COV is building other kindergartens in other remote villages. COV met with government officials and local civic organizations, all working cooperatively with COV for the benefit of children. If you are looking for a nonprofit to support that is making a powerful difference in people’s lives, you have found such an organization in Children of Vietnam.
Recently I had the privilege of visiting Children of Vietnam in Da Nang and It was really wonderful to see the impact that they have on the local community and the children that they help. I really felt that it was obviously such a worthwhile charity and we certainly learnt an awful lot in such a short space of time. The team were fantastic and had a great rapport with the families which we met. I look forward to keeping up with the work of Children of Vietnam.