Team Adventure to Mai Chau, Vietnam
Following on from the success of our Management team building adventure to the Arctic, this year Access Point sent an intrepid team of 9 volunteers all the way to Vietnam.
It was to be an adventure of a lifetime with kayaking, cave trips and an overnight fishing experience; the purpose of this trip however was different. Whilst we wanted again to take the team completely out of their comfort zones and bring together colleagues from different parts of the organisation, this time we wanted to make a difference to a community in need.
Heading to a small village in the Mai Chau region of Vietnam we funded the installation of a toilet block in a kindergarten that the team had to build from scratch with the most basic of tools, including a wonky wheelbarrow and four small buckets! This project allowed us to help develop the potential of future generations of children by improving their education facilities.
The team enjoying some down time in beautiful Vietnam
Our team included David, Amanda and Claire from management, Dominic, Sharrona and Jennie from our venue team, Natasha and Cheryl from sales support and Andy our building manager.
Starting in Hanoi the team got the opportunity to explore the capital city before heading on the 150Km trip to the Mai Chua region, heading on through the highlands to a small village in need of some help.
Here they 5 days to completely build a working wash block at a kindergarten for many generations of children to use.
The spectacular view from the homestay
Account Manager Sharrona said;
"When we arrived at the homestay we were all blown away by how beautiful the village was. The house was traditional and simple but the views were priceless. After we had a chance to absorb our surroundings we really started to see how little our hosts had and how simply they lead their lives. It was humbling to see how hard they worked to achieve the simplest tasks yet they were always laughing, smiling and in high spirits. It definitely put things into perspective."
The kindergarten was literally a room and there were no toilet facilities at all. There were designated toilet breaks where the young children had to walk in the blistering heat along a dirt road to the nearest facilities; far from ideal.
Team AP hard at work
So we got to work! The children looked on excitedly, shouting in Vietnamese to spur the team on. All work got rained off for a day and half during the project and as well as being soaked to the bone, it really dampened the teams spirits. They were desperate to get the project finished on time, so when the rain eased they worked double time to ensure the job got done on time.
Sharrona continued, "It was a great feeling seeing the roof go onto the finished building and seeing all our names on the plaque. We felt a real sense of achievement and pride in our work."
A very proud team AP on completion of the wash block
The local community came together and held a Thank You ceremony where the team presented them with a bag a stationary that our colleagues, friends and family had all generously donated.
"I still can’t fathom how something so simple as a toilet and pens and paper can have such a huge impact on the education of hundreds of children." said Sharrona. "It really opened my eyes seeing people with so little, be so happy and seeing how they all come together to help each other. Being a part of that is amazing as it is a rare occurrence when you live such a privileged life."
This was a fantastic opportunity for our company and colleagues to help people less fortunate than ourselves, to learn new skills and to have a genuine impact on the education of hundreds of Vietnamese children.
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