10 November, 2023

Year 12's Community Project in Mai Chau

Year 12's Community Project in Mai Chau | British International School in Hanoi | BIS Hanoi-Year 12 Community Project in Mai Chau-WhatsApp Image 20231101 at 195506
Year 12 students visited the Mai Chau region as part of the recent residential trip week at BIS Hanoi. The focus of this trip was to engage with the local community and support enhancing the local infrastructure.

Working with the community and charitable partners, BIS Hanoi pledged material to allow a local village, Na Chao, to continue to build infrastructure, including 50 metres of road and material to build a much-needed bridge. The project aims to improve the accessibility of Na Chao villagers to farmland and help the village increase productivity and much-needed income. I am proud to say that the students showed great industry, building over 30 metres of road themselves and completing the embankment project in just three days! The effort and dedication the students showed for this project were truly inspiring. The local community was grateful to receive the handover of the project to complete the final 20 metres of road and commented on how hard the students had worked.

Year 12's Community Project in Mai Chau | British International School in Hanoi | BIS Hanoi-Year 12 Community Project in Mai Chau-Year 12 BISCAS Mai Chau | BIS Hanoi

Alongside the infrastructure project, we found time to engage with the local community, who were kind enough to invite us into their traditional Thai-style homes, built off the ground. We chatted with families as we cooked traditional sticky bamboo rice, pork, and tofu over the open fires (which made the food taste so good!) and found out about the challenges rural communities face in the modern world. We heard about their commitment to keeping traditions alive and to retaining young people in the community who sometimes may want to go and work in the city. We found out about the daily routine and how different life is. It was a truly humble and defiant experience that opened all our eyes to the challenges and joys of living a rural life. We thank all the villagers for their hospitality and kindness and for accepting us into their homes.

Year 12's Community Project in Mai Chau | British International School in Hanoi | BIS Hanoi-Year 12 Community Project in Mai Chau-Year 12 BISCAS Mai Chau | BIS Hanoi

There was also time for some fun! In Lac Village, we built bamboo rafts and sailed them down the river, some more successfully than others. I hope the shoes have dried out! We played sports with local children in the park; I’d say there are possibly some future professional footballers to come from Mai Chau! We also learned traditional fan dancing, held a talent show for the Na Chao village, and made our way up to Chieu Cave, all 1200 steps up!

We packed so much into these three days that it really was a wonderful and enriching experience for all the students, making memories and new connections the whole time.

Mr. Pearson  

Head of Year 12