The Haven

Brief introduction

The Haven supports junior and senior high school students – Grades 6 -12 or 12-18 years of age. The students live at The Haven’s residential complex in Phú Thương Ward, Huế, Central Vietnam. They attend school during the day and then receive after-school tutoring focused on building vocational skills such as English language and computer literacy.

The Haven Education Project seeks to create opportunities and therefore a better life for its students. A basic education and skills in computing or English language is sufficient to elevate The Haven’s students out of poverty.

 

Mission statement

To provide disadvantaged, promising students from Central Vietnam with a secondary education and vocational skills, and therefore the opportunity to elevate out of poverty

In Vietnam, post-primary school education is not compulsory and most children do not have the opportunity to benefit from a secondary eduction. While about 97% of males and 96% of females attend primary school to age 10 or 11, only 35% of males and 13% of females attend secondary school.

They usually stay at home to help parents look after younger siblings, or help in the family enterprise – usually farming, menial labor or street vending. This situation is becoming more prevalent as Vietnam embraces a free market economy and dismantles some of the social welfare benefits of the former era. Further, schools and universities in Vietnam have steadily increased their tuition fees beyond the capacity of many families to pay, particularly those families who have lost income earners through death or illness, or those who have too many mouths to feed.

The Haven Education Project believes that in modern Vietnam it is much easier for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to get a good job, for example in a retail shop or office, if they have some skills in computing and / or English language. So apart from providing financial support for students to stay at school, the Project places great emphasis on equipping students with these two skills.

 

Background

The Haven Education Project was originally established by the Alumni Association of the Đồng-Khánh High School for Girls in Huế. It relied on small, ad hoc donations from the community, with the objective of paying the school fees of children from disadvantaged families in the area who showed promise at school and wanted to continue with post-primary school education.

In early 2007 The Haven received a substantial donation from a Vietnamese donor from Australia which enabled it to expand and improve the quality of its services.

In December 2007, the Project received final permission from the People’s Committee of Thua-Thien Province (permit #2914/QD – UBND) to operate as a ‘live-in’ facility for up to 30 students, with full and part-time tutoring and support staff.