A number of teachers in southern Vietnam have run a kitchen where they cook and serve free meals to disadvantaged students for the last five years.
It was 6:00 in the morning one weekday in Dong Thap Province’s Sa Dec City when 14 members of the local Former Teacher Association were busy preparing lunches for poor students in the locality.
Every day, hundreds of meals are cooked by the teachers in the kitchen located on Nguyen Sinh Sac Street before being served to needy students who have registered to be “members” of the place.
Nguyen Van Mot, chairman of the association, said that the group founded the kitchen since they could not stand seeing underprivileged students eating nutrient-poor but cheap food like raw instant noodles, bread and sticky rice before classes.
After receiving support from numerous teachers, Mot and other members of the association started mobilizing food for the kitchen.
Local schools then sent lists of poor students to register for free meals.
Since it was established, the kitchen has served more than 200 students from local middle and high schools with a menu that changes every day.
“We’ve run this kitchen with the hope that it will last forever,” Le Thi Xuan Thu, vice head of the executive board of the kitchen, said. “That’s the wish of all teachers as well as donors who have helped keep the kitchen in operation in order to support disadvantaged students on their way to school.”
“Though we get tired sometimes, seeing students enjoy the meals and not have to go to school on an empty stomach cheers us up,” she added.