Pursuing a dream

Ly says she is a shy and gentle girl, but she is determined to achieve her target when it’s set. The girl has dreamed of being a teacher since she went to kindergarten in Kim Dong district. And she is now a third-year student at the Hanoi-based Vietnam National University. Ly was admitted to World Vision’s sponsorship programme when she was a primary student. 

EYES ON HER TARGET

Ly passed the entrance exams for a school for gifted students after she completed her primary education in Hung Yen province, north from Hanoi. Every day, the little girl went by boat from her village, which lies along Red River, and then cycled to the school. 

One time, the girl escaped death by an inch at the wharf, which was always crowded. “I stood still on the ground while a boat was going to land my site. Luckily, a man quickly carried me on his arm to get out of the place. If not, there would have been an accident,” Ly recalls. 

Determined to be a teacher.

Ly says she is a shy and gentle girl, but she is determined to achieve her target when it’s set. The girl has dreamed of being a teacher since she went to kindergarten in Kim Dong district. And she is now a third-year student at the Hanoi-based Vietnam National University. “When I passed the entrance exam to the university, I know my dream is coming true. I was so happy,” Ly says. “I want to be a math teacher at a junior secondary school or a high school in my hometown after I graduate.”


“I love my teachers, especially the one who taught me at Grade 4 and 5. She helped me and my friends a lot. She was devoted much to her job,” the young girl says. 

After the incident at the board station, her parents took her and her sisters and their bikes to the boat in the morning and picked them back up in the afternoon no matter if they were busy. 

“Children traveled so hard in the past. They needed to go by boat to other schools outside our village if they wanted to continue their higher study,” remembers Ly’s father, Ta Van Muon. “Only some children graduated from high school because many parents couldn’t have patience to wait for their children at the wharf or had money to buy them a bike.”



Ly’s parents were poor farmers. They lived on crops of maize, jute, beans or sugarcane and animal husbandry. The bike that Ly used for school was a gift from her relative. 

“Although our living condition was difficult, my wife and I hoped our children studied well. We took care of our children’s education as much as we could,” Muon says. 

Ly remembers that her parents once said to her that their village was poor so they had to study hard. “They reminded me, knowledge is the best way for my future,” she says. 

Following her parents’ advice, Ly made every effort to become a good student. 

She studied whenever she had some free time. She used to read all lessons before she went to school and she asked her teachers at class immediately if there was anything unclear.

When starting her study at university, the road ahead was not easy for the girl.

“Everything, including teachers, friends and learning methods, was new to me. My classmates came from different parts of the country so some of them were not friendly at first. Meanwhile, I couldn’t talk with my parents as I used to do,” she says. 

“Despite of the difficulties, I regarded my dream as my top priority. I always thought of how to realise my dream,” she confirms.

Ly was admitted to World Vision’s sponsorship programme when she was a primary student. Though she didn’t keep any copies, the girl remembered to write letters, greeting cards and draw pictures to her sponsor. 

“I remembered that I wished I could be a fairy to help my sponsor when she talked with me about her difficulties one time,” Ly says. “Through my sponsor, I understood that many others might have troubles but they still gave us love and care.” 

“The sponsorship programme showed me love and humanity. It was a motivation for me to study well,” she adds. 

Ly is the second child in her family. She has two sisters and a younger brother. Her eldest sister is doing a Masters Degree in pedagogics. Her younger sister is studying at college and the youngest is at a local primary school. 

“Our children grow up fairly well. It’s our dream that we didn’t think we could achieve in the past,” Muon says. 

 

At present, Ly’s parents have two crops of maize and one crop of beans every year; they waited for the whole year to harvest a crop of sugarcane in the past. With one cow supported by World Vision, the family raises two more calves. 

“The training courses that World Vision provided to us were useful. We have higher yield in a shorter time after we were trained on cultivation. We also learn how to feed cows and pigs. Raising cow is not as hard as in the past so we don’t ask my children to graze cows in the field,” Muon says. 

Though World Vision phased out activities in Kim Dong, local partners continue to organise training courses on cultivation in the district. “I learnt about growing a new kind of maize in late last year,” the man adds. 

Since Ly entered the university, students at her village don’t have to go by boat. A new road was built, connecting her small village to the outside world, and now most children in the village complete high school and many go to university. 

“With the support of World Vision, both my children and others have gained access to higher education so they are not put at fewer disadvantage than their guys in other areas,” Muon says. “As they’re educated, they will have a better job and deeper knowledge, which are helpful for their families and our society.”