Report on 2014 Renovation of Lew’s School, Dong Ha, Quang Tri – Dedicated 1995
April 27 2015
By Sam Russell, Country Director
The Dong Ha school renovation work is a huge success. The place looks great! They replaced all the termite eaten doors and windows, replaced all the broken or rusty door locks and fixed the sagging floors and re-tiled them. They also laid pavers on the school yard so there won’t be any muddy sections. There was a big drainage ditch dug next to the school to help reduce flooding. The director said that they’ve already noticed its effects because the water hasn’t flooded the school building since it was completed.
There was a surprise bonus, they started work on an admin building by sinking pilings for the foundation. With next year’s budget they hope to finish the admin building, which will free up classrooms. The director made a request to the local officials for a sports hall/ gymnasium, which was approved but there isn’t a budget for it yet but it sounds like it will happen one day in the not too distant future.
They want to upgrade their computer lab because the old PCs are like antiques. We asked the director to send us a letter of request that will include new furniture as well. The furniture they have is old and not the correct size for the students. Lan thinks we might be able to get a local Vietnamese business to donate the PCs. She’ll look into it. I didn’t make any promises but said that we would consider their request.
I asked again about tracking down students that went to school 20 years ago because now they’d be 25 to 30 years old. The school staff was skeptical until I pointed out that in Vietnam the students have a tradition to visit their teachers every year. I said that stories from these past students is a great way to raise funds to pay for their requests. The director said he thought it would be possible and would personally look into it.
I was really impressed with the school director as well as the local officials who remain enthusiastic and seem committed to future improvements!