Today is all about celebrating the fathers near and far, here in the states and in Vietnam. To all the dads and father figures out there, thank you. Your dedication, groundedness, and strength provides a secure, stable and loving foundation that helps children, families and communities thrive. In this spirit of fatherly appreciation, we are sharing Tai’s story.
Growing up in a poorer community in the Ngu Hanh Son district in Danang, Tai’s future could have been defined by his difficult surroundings; but his father’s determination to see his children and Tai succeed in education and career shaped a positive and inspirational household.
Both of Tai’s parents are hired bricklayers, who work hard all day to earn money for basic daily expenses and to cover their three children’s study costs. They know the impact of providing their children with a solid education, and worked the extra mile to do so.
Although his father struggled with health complications, he continued to work just as relentlessly as he could to bring in the dual-income support for the family. Fueled by his desire to give his kids all their dreams, he works to do all he can to support his children’s future.
His work ethic shines in and out of his job – providing an income on one level, but even more so fulfilling a sense of purpose and duty as a father in his care for his children. He became a strong role model for all children, instilling a quality of hard work and the significance of showing up, all three children studied hard throughout their education, resulting in high remarks.
Four bright kids, however, also means four demanding tuition expenses. While Tai exceptionally passed an entrance exam into the DaNang University of Science and Technology, the timing of school put an extra financial strain on their family. Tai’s older brother was currently a 2nd year student at the same university under a financial crunch. At that time, their parents could not afford both of them to have a university education. Tai selflessly took a step back, putting his own educational pursuits and dreams on hold to ensure his brother’s completion of studies. In the meantime, he found general labor jobs to earn income for himself, in addition to helping his parents to pay school fees for both his older brother and younger sister in grade 7.
The family remained in this state of overwork and strained resources until the intervention of Children of Vietnam. Tai was enrolled in Bright Scholars, a program which supports monthly accommodation cost, tuition living costs, and skill training courses for poor students living in Central areas of Vietnam Country. Over the course of five years in our program, Tai finally got the opportunity to pursue his university studies, taking that dream off the back burner. He completed his course and graduated from Science and Technology University with a certification of high ranking.
In expressing his experience working and collaborating with Children of Vietnam, Tai shared: “I was very lucky to be a selected beneficiary of the Bright Scholars Program. During the past five years, COV not only supported me financially but also additional life and job skill training in interesting extracurricular activities and workshops. Through these activities, I have learned more about many experiences in the community and skill sets such as communication, sympathy and
confidence. These experiences are the most memorable, and skills that I keep in my mind at all times.”
In 2019, after completing his studying at the university, Tai applied and was selected to work for the Savina Solar Power Company in Danang. He shared that besides his education qualifications, it was his experience in the additional workshops and teachings from being in the Bright Scholars program that made him the perfect candidate. The extracurricular activities he participated in furthered his application, making him a more highly valuable asset to the company.
Now, Ta has a monthly salary of 8,500,000 VND (equivalent to 370 USD per month). A salary that provides the means necessary for Tai to sustain himself. His stable job and steady income has also been a huge financial help to his family. He feels like he can also step into being the role model his father was and continues to be, taking responsibility and giving back to others. Presently, Tai and his family are focused on encouraging the youngest sister to pursue her own academic interests and pursue her dreams.