Orphanage Update: Fall 2011

ATG recently sent over funds to assist our supported orphanages with Back to School tuition as well as to celebrate Harvest Moon Festival. Below are heartfelt letters of appreciation we received from the orphanages with an update on the children. Thank you so much for supporting ATG and allowing us to help these children in need!


Dear Aileen and members of the ATG family family.

We will use most of this money [you sent] to pay for the tuition of the children of Uu Dam and buy a little treats for them to celebrate the Mid-Autumn (Moon/Children Festival).  I would like to represent the Board and the orphans of Uu Dam to express our deepest gratitude to the ATG family.

Harvest Moon Celebration at Uu Dam Orphanage

With a small portion from your donation plus donations of other Buddhist friends, on Sunday, we were able to organize the Moon Festival for the orphans of Uu Dam as well as the children from the poor families surrounding Uu Dam.  Our yard was filled with children.  There were about 300 children who participated in the entertainment of dragon dance, lanterns and eating treats.  Though the weather was not very nice, the air was filled with happiness and warm feelings.  The children were so excited and encouraged.  Again, we appreciate that ATG family has contributed to bring happiness on the Children Festival Day to the children of Uu Dam, specifically, and the children of the poor countryside, in general.

Wishing the ATG family always laughter.


Lion Dance at Harvest Moon Celebration

Reading your email, I am really touched by your compassion.  Again, I would like to express our sincere appreciation to you and members of the ATG family.

The two children who just passed the University entrance exam are Tu and Hoa.  Tu passed the Economy faculty, while Hoa passed the Telecomunication faculty of the Hue University-Technology and Science.  Both of them have been thru very hard situations.  Tu lost both his parents when he was 4 years- old.  He lived with his uncle, but because his uncle was so poor and has many children, Tu came to the Uu Dam center since the beginning of the 7th grade.  It has been almost 7 years now.  On the other hand, both of Hoa’s parents had HIV and passed soon after.  Hoa and both of his sisters entered Uu Dam Center 6 years ago.  All three of them are good kids and bright students.  Both of Hoa’s sisters are star students of the Phu My school (has both 1st and 2nd Grade classes) for 6 years in a row.

The twins, Xuan and Thu, achieved high grades in college during last year.  They are very good and study very hard.  While we are building the extension, they both have been working hard to help take care of things, because they are the oldest.  That was really helpful to me, and I feel so blessed to have them.

Both Xuan and Thu  received waiver of tuitions.   But tuitions are not much.  For example, at the beginning of the year, each University student must pay VND$3,000,000 for tuition and fees.  In that amount, tuition is only VND$300,000.  The remaining is for health insurance, books and supplies and other fees.  Whether the children are in 1st Grade, 2nd Grade, or 3rd Grade would not matter.  At the beginning of the year,  we must pay VND$600,000/each, then the school will only waive VND$65,000 of tuition.  Then we have to pay for the rest of the payments for the children.

It will only be another month until the extension will be complete.  I will continue to receive more children, but with the condition that they have to be real orphans.

Just a few notes to let you and everyone at ATG know.  I pray for safety and happiness to you and the ATG family.  Hope all is well.

– Uu Dam Orphanage


Dear Aileen and the very Dear ATG Group,

I have not written to you and to ATG, but the nuns and the children at Son Ca always remember you and your husband, especially when you visited us and talked about ATG. The Sisters and the children are very touched and will always have the deepest gratitude and feelings toward ATG. We daily pray that Christ and God will bless your family and everyone in the ATG group.

During the past weeks, we were very busy getting the children ready to go back to school.  We have 23 of the children from 6 to 9 years old who are going to elementary school now.  We used to have only one ‘cyclo,’ so we cannot take all of them to school on time.   I made the decision to borrow money from the bank so that we can make four trips each day to take them to schools that are 2km away from the orphanage.

Son Ca orphanage receiving ATG gifts

We just received funds from you and the ATG group.  We spent some of it to buy lanterns for the children to celebrate the Harvest Moon Festival and also to buy them some treats. The remaining amount we used to pay the tuition of the children who are in elementary school.   We were lucky that you and ATG came at the right time to save the day and put out the fire, or else we wouldn’t know what to do.  For the children in middle School and high School, we will apply for reduction in tuitions, but will have to buy and pay for other fees.  This year, we have three students who passed the high school graduation exam and got accepted to universities and/or colleges. Hoài Phúc entered  the Education Major with a minor in English.  Mi Sa will study Accounting, while Minh Ngoc applied to Medical School.  She wants to be able to help the poor people and the children at Sacred Hearts.  That’s her dream, very precious!  We hope you and the ATG group help her to achieve that dream.

In the next few days, I will receive a baby who was abandoned at the hospital, and four children from the highland whose family are so poor that they don’t have enough to eat and go to school.  I received one baby less than a year-old who is so tiny because her mother was only 1m10.  We have been taking good care of her, but she doesn’t seem to grow.  Even so, she is really cute.  You will see what I mean whenever you come back to VN and visit with us again.

Therefore, in total, we will have 70 children and 15 handicapped children.  We hope that God will continue to bless us so that we will have enough energy to help take care of them.

Again, we really appreciate you and the ATG group.  We wish you and the ATG group always are healthy, always happy and achieve all you have wished.


The Sisters and the Children at Son Ca Orphanage

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