Here are some of the photos of the orphanage we visited twice while we have been staying in the city of Hue. The Sister Superior is sitting in the middle of Steve and me and we are showing her the AFOs and the suit we bought over to see if they would be of use to her children. She spoke excellent English as well as French and she was a lovely, warm woman. She had studied in Saigon and has been looking after handicapped children most of her life. Her name is Ho Thi Hien.
And the shots here are some of the children we got to meet and hang out with on our first visit. Billie made friends with another 8 year old girl called Thu. They both just connected with each other.
Dacey loved the twin babies that she got to hold. On the second visit we decided to firstly go shopping. So we asked the Sisters if they could take us to go shopping for whatever the orphans needed. We got nods from them both. They were very excited about going shopping.
What I realized as soon as we got to the shopping centre was that they thought we wanted to go shopping for us and our children not the orphans. There were plasma TVs, clothes, crockery and all the items you’d expect to see at a multilevel department store. I felt sick. I turned to Steve and said to him as both Sisters walked off with the kids in delight that there’s been a big miscommunication here. So we went along with it for 5 minutes (I couldn’t wait to get out of there) and we had some fun, then we had to have some more conversations in slow English about us wanting to spend money on what the orphans and other children needed. After a while, with heads still nodding, we got through what we really wanted and we went shopping for the orphanage…finally.
We purchased colouring in books, novels, cartoon books of Romeo and Juliet and others bits and pieces that we thought they would enjoy. The sisters said the kids would enjoy cake so off to the supermarket we went and bought boxes of soft cake that were wrapped separately. We spent just under 2 million. The Sisters said to hand any donations to the Superior so we went straight to the ATM and cashed up on Dong. Quite an experience trying to spend this money! But in the end it was successful.
The kids at the orphanage took an interest in the iPad and loved pushing the buttons. It was the second time Sister Anne had seen an iPad. The deaf and mute girls learn sign language and created a song for us too.