Managing Sister and the children of OBV VN celebrate Father's Day
Dear Father, on this Sunday we celebrate all our fathers, for we know that our fathers are most deserving of this honor and respect.
Although you did not bring us into this world and nurtured us, we know that you have made many sacrifices and care deeply for all of us; you have extended your arms widely to envelop and embrace us into your heart. Father, we know that you work tirelessly day and night; when we hear that you barely sleep – at times merely resting yours eyes for a couple of hours at night – our hearts cannot help but ache for you!
On summer, when there is no school and the OBV children have time to relax after a stressful semester; Dad, Mom, aunt and uncles make a plan for them to have fun, still don't forget teach them the lessons of life: the value of work, the co-operation in family. And the first lesson they have learnt today is the value of work. They have weaved basket, a work required of patience. Maybe because the majority of them come from poor families, weaving basket seems easy to them. Everyone started to work excitingly. To prepare for this, I had to go to the factory to learn to weave. Then I took the material home and showed them how to weave a complete basket.
The life is marked by different periods as well as the school life. It's happy for those who are lucky enough to be able to go to school, and they will never forget their school lives. The heat of summer, the sounds of cicadas, the color of Flamboyant flowers make everyone's heart flutters. It's time to relax after a stressful school year, but with you, students in ninth grade, summer means saying good bye, starting a new stage and marking a new step of maturity and turning 15 years old, the year of dreams and the open skies.
From June 7 to 9, in tenth year ordination anniversary, Dad Thong organized a field trip to Hon Rom beach for Vietnam and Cambodia OBV children. Particularly in this trip, a special guest, Mom Nga, was present. Being a physician, she had anonymous donated most of the income earnings to support the children financially for all past years.
The heartbeat of the children in Cambodia rushed down and up constantly when preparing for the journey. Although applying for the passports three months ago, there were hassles in processing the legal documents. Even in last couple of days before the journey, the official said: "Not done yet, with reason: government violence." The OBV members searched another alternative path to get the legal passports so all children could participate in this meaningful trip. The documents weren't done until Thursday night before the Saturday - which was the day to leave for the field trip.
The Cambodia OBV children are arriving in Vietnam
The Cambodia OBV children visited the OBV "Feb 5th" store, while waiting for the bus to bring them to OBV Vietnam house
Somewhere about, a cicada sings
Here, look what summer brings
The sun is fierce, pouring fire
The sultry heat's stifling
Short spring time went by,
And t'is summer time.
Nobody in the world has been as kind to me as my mother. Nobody in the world is as supporting to me as my father.
Today is Mother's Day. I received a bouquet of flowers and my children's best wishes. There's also a cake made first-time by one of my children. The surprise gave me more happiness.
The first day we met her was 1 month ago. A skinny dark tanned girl in the past is "light tanned" today and had gained some weight. When she met us, she held our hands and laughed gurly. The intimacy and trust to the people she just met several times let us feel that she was already a member of the OBV family.
I have experienced different emotions deep in my heart every time I come to the OBV home.
After an hour riding like a bat out of hell on the streets of Saigon which sparkle in the sunlight, I finally get to the OBV home today at 12:00 PM. My fatigue caused by the hot weather disappears the minute I see the small house of the OBV family. As usual, I feel no more tired when looking at the innocent smiles of the children and hearing the joyful greetings of the kids: "Here you are, uncle! Why haven't you visited us lately?" My heart is invaded by an immense happiness that wipes away any worries or sadness. But today I have one more reason to feel so happy visiting the OBV home: I am starving! It's now lunch time and I should be invited to lunch.
I met you 4 years ago. You were the first child I met and brought back to One Body Village when I started the work of searching and rescuing victims of slavery and sexual abused. I still remember vividly that first time. We came from far away to the cold desolated house with only 2 sisters were living and taking care of each other. The older sister, you, was only 15 years old. I still remember the suspicious looks from the loved ones in the family and the detractors of the neighbors' pity when asked about you.
It's been a long while since I shared with you news about the OBV VN girls' Krav Maga/self defense class.
They've been training with me for the past five months now, and they're at a level of fitness most adults 2x/3x their age have never reached. I gave the older girls their first exam, a grueling two hour marathon that tested their technique, stamina, endurance, and will power.
6/7 of the girls passed. I couldn't be more proud of all of them. In a couple of weeks, they will start learning ground defense.
You want to see what a confident teenage girl looks like? Take a look at them training in my class.
March 23, 2014