On the 20th of April, 2022, Saigon Children’s Charity and donors opened the 221th school that this organisation has built during its 30 years in Vietnam. With 150 students aged 6 to 11, B Nhon Hung primary school – in Nhon Hung commune, Tinh Binh district, An Giang province – was renovated with the financial support from BASF and partners (MKVN, Brenntag Vietnam, Sam Chem Sphere, Việt Đức, Phúc Hưng), HP Vietnam, individual donors on Momo e-wallet, and counterpart funding from the local government.
After four months of construction, the project has completed building two new classrooms and a playground, spread across a total area of 328 square metres. With this opening of the newly renovated school, the children at Nhon Hung commune now have a safer and more beautiful place to study and play, just in time before the rainy season.
Before the renovation, students attended classes in old facilities built in 2005, with basic structures and materials, which were unsafe and uncomfortable. Different classes had to take turns using the classrooms due to the lack of facilities. During rainy seasons, the classroom’s scrappy metal roofing leaks and causes loud noises – disturbing the children’s learning. With the new facilities, the school can raise the number of students each year from 100 to 150, and will enable more efficient and effective learning and development.
“The past two years have been difficult for everyone, and especially for those who were already poor. BASF and other donors have shown that with generosity and kindness it is possible to help change lives for the better and contribute meaningfully to communities. By helping people through the most difficult times and giving their children a chance to build a brighter future for themselves, you are creating an impact that will last generations,” Mr. Damien Roberts, Executive Director of Saigon Children’s Charity, said at the ceremony.
“As part of our long-term commitment to support Vietnam’s education development, BASF together with our key customers and partners has enabled school children from remote areas to get better access to quality education, through this school renovation program. Despite the various challenges over the last two years due to the pandemic, we are proud to continue our flagship program and once again bring local students a safe and high-quality learning environment,” said Erick Contreras, Managing Director, BASF Vietnam.
The students painted with environmentally-friendly paint from Nippon
At the event, the students also participated in a virtual lab, guided by BASF staff
Nhon Hung commune belongs to a mountainous area of Tinh Bien district, which shares border with Cambodia. Over ¼ of the population are of Khmer ethnicity, with a poverty rate of up to 11.5%. Khmer children dropping out of school has been a long occurring social issue. Without support starting from the early stages of education, these children are more likely to drop out of school and are at an increased risk of becoming victims of trafficking.
Like every school building project of Saigon Children’s Charity, the design and construction of the classrooms follow the standards of the Ministry of Education and Training. Saigon Children’s Charity also established a people’s supervision committee including parents, teachers, and locals to coordinate in supervising the construction, as well as preserving and maintaining the facilities after completion.