Va, 14, and her schoolmates live in the remote area of Meo Vac, Ha Giang province, Vietnam, and have to walk ten kilometres over rocky mountainous roads to go to school. Throughout the year, whether it’s raining or the sun is shining, they are all in class on time.
Va said: “I love studying at school where I have friends to play with and to nurture my dream to be a doctor.”
However, because of infrastructure difficulties and limited government budget, school facilities are falling short for the 405 students. Va and her friends still have to face several shortcomings.
“We stay all day at school. We learn here, eat here and drink here. Before, when we were thirsty, we just went to the stream or rain water tank to drink,” said Va.
At the school, water quality was not good enough to drink directly and diarrhoea afflicted many students.
To confront this issue, the school bought a family water filter, but it’s too small to serve for a high number of demands. Plan International Vietnam, therefore, has recently installed a water filter system with high capacity of 250 litres per hour for a school. Va and her friends are now enjoying fresh and clean water every day.
Plan International Vietnam has furnished all schools from eight districts with high capacity water filter systems since September 2014.
Besides the filter systems, Plan International Vietnam has also provided 20- litre water containers and glasses for all classrooms. Every day, teachers fill clean water to these containers from the filter system for their students to consume during class.
“The students no longer have to drink contaminated water. The diarrhoea has decreased dramatically,” said Mr Quang, principal of Sung Thai primary and secondary school.
Va added: “I’m happy to drink clean water. It has no strange taste and no bad smell. It’s good for health as well. Now, I cannot drink the contaminated water. At home, I use rain water and boil it for the whole family to drink.”