The workcamp named “School brightening up” is projected to take place at Lao Cai boarding school in Muong Khuong town, Lao Cai province. This workcamp is organized by VPV, in cooperation with the Center for Global Education Link (GEL).
The title of the workcamp, “school brightening up”, literally refers to the idea that we would carry out some activities to make the school look nicer and brighter such as painting wall murals, redecorating the playgrounds, planting flowers,… In a broader sense, it relates to our bigger goal: through these activities, we expect to create a nice, cozy and friendly atmosphere at this school, which would encourage the students to stay at school and enjoy studying.
The main activities include:
• Cleaning the playground
• Planting flowers and small trees on the playground
• Decorating the playground with flower pots and recyled materials (old tyres, plastic bottles…)
• Painting wall murals (around classrooms)
• Creating English learning corners (painting wall murals with numbers or vocabulary in English; or creating an English bookshelf…)
• Exchanging cultures with local students and people (with traditional games and performances)
• Other activities based on volunteers’ ideas and the school’s needs.
Volunteers will stay at the school dormitory with basic living conditions. Volunteers should prepare for basic bathroom and toilet facilities. There will be bunk beds and mosquito nets. Volunteers should bring a sleeping bag.
Electricity, internet, clean water is available but limited. There is no water heater, no air-conditioner, and no washing machine.
Volunteers can eat at the school canteen or eat out at some restaurants nearby (1 or 2 km from the school). Food will mostly be locally sourced and cooked. Those who have special diet should inform VPV beforehand.
Muong Khuong town is 50km to the Northeast of Lao Cai city, with the border line of 86,5km with China to the Northwest. As a mountainous town, Muong Khuong has a lot of mountain ranges and narrow valeys. There are 14 ethnic groups living in the town, with H’Mong being the biggest group.
Volunteers will have 2 days off on Saturday and Sunday at the end of the 1st week of camp. Volunteers can stay in Muong Khuong area to discover the local village. There are a number of caves, mountains and water falls for those who like trekking. There are mandarin gardens, night market and Sunday market for those who want to discover local life. Muong Khuong is not a tourist attraction, which makes it a perfect place for those who want to learn about authentic life of local people.
Alternatively, volunteers can travel to Sapa, one tourist attraction in Lao Cai province. Volunteers can travel to Sapa on Saturday morning and come back to the school on Sunday afternoon. Sapa has stunning lanscape and scenery but at the same time it is very touristic. Nevertheless, it can still be a place of interest for those who want to experience some lively night life or to have a pizza bite on the weekend. Volunteers can also leave the village on Friday afternoon and take the bus back to Ha Noi or other provinces to see other remarkable places in Vietnam.
If volunteers stay at the village over the weekend, food and accommodation are still provided. Those who travel to Sapa or other provinces will need to take care of their own food and transportation.
To carry out the volunteer programs in Lao Cai, VPV has received positive support from Lao Cai Department of Education and Training. VPV has developed partnership with some local schools and the Center for Global Education Link (GEL) in Lao Cai, who share the same objectives of improving the quality of English teaching and learning, particularly for children from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Volunteers should provide their C.V. and passport copy in advance.