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Cross-Cultural Trip to Vietnam

On 27 October 2014, 25 Secondary 3 Normal Technical Stream Students and 3 teachers embarked on a 6D5N Service Learning Trip to Vietnam. The students had done CIP activities like installing new fans, building new tables and chairs, painting of the windows and doors of old classrooms in a local village school, Trung Kien Secondary School.

The Vietnamese students are very warm-hearted and their sincerity and genuine kindness touched many of our students. Through service learning, our students experienced the Vietnamese local school culture, established friendship with the Vietnamese students and most importantly, strengthened the friendship within the class. The Vietnamese students’ love for learning inspired our students and many of our students experienced how contented and happy these students were despite being poor and underprivileged in comparison.

Besides service learning, YTzens also learnt about Vietnamese cultures and heritage through tours along the Mekong River and visiting places of interest like the famous Cu Chi Tunnels and Ben Thanh Market in Ho Chi Minh. They also had fun being rice-planting farmers for half a day.  This is indeed a meaningful and heart-and-eye opening trip for our NT students.

Objectives:
  • Experience the Vietnamese local school culture, establish friendship with the Vietnamese students and most importantly, strengthen the friendship amongst themselves too. 
  • Learn to be more independent, appreciative of what they are being provided for and stop taking things for granted. 
  • Reflect and think ahead so as to plan ahead for their future.

Reflections:
  • We helped the local school to paint their doors and window grills that were dirty and rusty. We feel that even though the painting was tough, we still persevered through and had finished painting and scraping the excess paint off the window frames. We really learnt a lot by helping the kids renovate their schools, and despite their learning environment is bad, their learning attitude really impressed me, compared to Singapore students, I feel that the Vietnam students takes more pride in their studies. ~ Plinio Lin 
  • There are many valuable things that I have learnt from this trip. I should stop complaining about everything and start appreciate meaningful things. ~ Karina Rizfia