The Intrepid Foundation is now supporting 40 fantastic non-government organisations around the globe. Jane Crouch, Intrepid’s Responsible Travel Manager writes, “I feel incredibly honoured to have regular communications with the many inspiring people who do the extraordinary work of these organisations. They are often up against phenomenal challenges and make very limited resources go a long way towards improving the lives of local people, animals and protecting their natural environment.
Rarely a day goes by without receiving an email of news or thanks for our support, but unfortunately I don’t often get to meet these terrific people. I count on our local staff who manage our relationships with these organisations, which I oversee from Intrepid’s head office. But occasionally I can sever the mouse cord and hit the road to have the pleasure of meeting some of my heroes.
For the last 3 years we’ve been supporting Children’s Hope in Action (CHIA) based out of Hoi An in Central Vietnam – providing vital health and disability programs and educational services to vulnerable families. In October I got to meet their team in person.
Hoi An has developed significantly since I was a group leader in the region in the late 1990s. Tourism has brought in affluence for some, but in villages nearby there is still poverty and disadvantage for many.
I fully concur with the words of another recent visitor to CHIA, Victor Green, “Their staff is their greatest asset. They are young but well qualified, most with university educations and some with double degrees. They are the sons and daughters of determined, tireless and proud people who have survived a history so harsh that no one but them can comprehend. While this new generation has different skills and has had the opportunity of a better education, the determination to overcome and succeed remains in their blood.
They are both young men and young women. Some are about to marry, some have started their own families. Some are still studying to further their careers. The family unit is all important in Vietnam, but then so is employment in a country where everyone must work. Their empathy and purpose is with the most disadvantaged where they assist by improving the lives of children with medical, educational, therapy and housing support. In doing so, they provide a service to families and the community the value of which can never be quantified. So as is assured for the future of Vietnam, CHIA staff will succeed. Their futures and fortunes are guaranteed, their dreams will be realised. They are just the nicest people you are likely to meet.”
The Intrepid Foundation – travellers making a difference
Help support Children’s Hope in Action and other great organisations via the Intrepid Foundation, plus find out how your donation can be matched* by Intrepid Travel!
* Donations will be matched by Intrepid Travel up to AU$5000 (or equivalent) per donor and a total of AU$400,000 each financial year.
* Photo of Jane (left) with CHIA staff.