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Adventure with a cause

Adventure with a cause

Fundraising trek to bring clean water to children in northern Vietnam

ChildFund New Zealand is inviting adventurous Kiwis to take on the ChildFund Challenge: Trek Vi-etnam – a once in a lifetime travel opportunity that will also raise funds to bring clean, safe drinking wa-ter to children in the remote Cao Bang province of Vietnam.*

“This is both an adventure and a fundraising challenge,” explains ChildFund New Zealand CEO Paul Brown. "Our intrepid travellers will begin their journey in New Zealand, with fitness training to prepare them for the hilly terrain of Northern Vietnam, and fundraising to donate to our water project in the area.

“The trek will also go far beyond the typical routes found in glossy holiday brochures – into bamboo for-ests, along mountain paths high above the valley floor, and with overnight stays in small mountain villages complete with traditional local hospitality.

“But the real highlight of this adventure will be a visit to a ChildFund New Zealand project. There, our travel-lers will see firsthand how their support will change the lives of children and families in Cao Bang through the provision of clean, safe drinking water.”

The funds raised prior to the trek will provide:
• Materials to build 100 water filters for 100 families in the area
• Workshops for local men and women on how to construct water filters
• Training on how to use the water filters
• Water tests to make sure the gift of clean water is a lasting solution
The new voluntourism – adventures with a cause

The adventure fundraising model of the ChildFund Challenge, managed through Inspired Adventures, is an impactful and sustainable way to combine travel and doing good, says Brown.

“This model means travellers have an extremely unique experience, while the community is provided with the power – the funding and training, to make a difference to their own lives.”

This compares to other voluntourism-type schemes, which can sometimes have unintended negative conse-quences for the very communities people are meaning to help. “Rather than volunteering and taking a role a local may be able to benefit from, providing funds and skills training enables people to help themselves and in ways that are most effective.”

ChildFund’s experience in Vietnam

Recently marking their 20 year milestone, ChildFund Vietnam is now present in eight districts across three provinces in the north of the country, where the majority of families are from ethnic minority groups and among the poorest in the country.

“Annually, more than 20 projects are implemented, assisting over 33,000 children and their families in the areas of education, health, water and sanitation, and livelihoods,” Brown says.
“Each project plays a vital role in contributing to an overall improvement in living standards for these rural communities.”

ChildFund New Zealand’s funding is concentrated in the Cao Bang province, a remote and difficult to ac-cess part of Vietnam, a feature which contributes to the especially high rate of poverty.
Brown says that New Zealand funds have grown since they started supporting children and their communi-ties in the province in 2009.

“New Zealanders currently sponsor more than 1,700 children in the province as part of a 5 year project from 2014-2019 to build stronger, more resilient communities in Cao Bang. The focus on this area means we can make a concentrated effort and donors can also see the direct impact of Kiwi generosity.

“We have already seen how successful our initiatives can be in the district of Quang Uyen, where we have taught modern farming methods to over 2,300 farmers, provided loans to households to buy farming tools or animals, and trained youth in farming or construction to create a source of income,” he says.

“Our vision is to create a place where children are protected from poverty and have access to greater oppor-tunities to reach their full potential in these remote areas of Vietnam.”

*Spaces on this trek are limited, if interested, Kiwis can request an information pack from Shar-ni at Inspired Adventures on 09 280 3339.


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