Vietnam student tour Ben Tre – community service and local life – 2nd day

The second day of our Vietnam student tour Ben Tre in building the toilet happens with more operation in community service and touching more local life.

Vietnam student tour Ben Tre with touching more local life.

We have breakfast in the local house of Mr. Muoi. The main course is bread with eggs but we also taste new thing. We have coffee with condensed milk which is a very typical drink of local people in the morning. We also have some pomelo fruit, right in the middle of a tropical fruit garden, and listen to the story of Vietnamese coffee.  It’s great to know that Vietnam is a world leading country exporting coffee to the world when enjoying the right way of Vietnamese coffee drinking. The coffee is the first touch.

The morning walk along village trails takes us across gardens of tropical fruits. We see pomelo, jack fruits, rese apple and others. We arrive boat quay but visit a local market before taking the boat trip. The market is on the riverside for the ease of access by boat for all local people here. Most of local commodity is transported by boats, and local people also go here and there by boat a lot too. The local market is another very touch of our Vietnam student tour Ben Tre today. The market is amazing with local buying and selling all things for their daily life. They sell clothes, hats, hair wears, watchs and sourvernirs. All kind of tropical fruits, vegetables, agricultural products are ranged in the ground for any to buy and cook their lunch and dinner of that day. We also see butchers selling beef, chicken, pork, ducks in the

The hospitality of people in the market is the next touch to the local daily life. The sound hello hello are from anywhere, coming with smiles and laugh.

We have a walking into the market, visit many corners and going back to the boat quay for the cruise to our project site as normal.

Vietnam student tour Ben Tre with being a true builder.

Today we focus on building more walls for the toilets. We divide our team into groups with many functions. The first group is arranged to transport brick and supply brick to builders (who are master builders and us students). They are brick supplier. The second group continues transporting sand from the boat in canal to our site. They are sand supplier. Another group is responsible for supplying mortar. They mix sand, cement, and water with a percentage instructed by the master builders and bring mortar to us the builders. Our forth group lays bricks to make wall. It’s not difficult because the master builders have instructed us carefully and also make lines by fabric strings so we are able to make straight walls. More walls have come into being.

Rain comes but people still work as we feel we enjoy building the toilet. Luckily it’s just a short rain and we are not wet with our hats.

Around 11:00 AM we stop for lunch. It’s hot and we have worked for a while and we need to have a rest too. We walk to a local house next to the school. They are ones welcome us and cook us the lunch for days we are here. The homestay is too far and it’s not smart to go back and return after lunch.

We come to the house, having some washing to make sure our body clean after being a true builder. We then got introduced to family members. We visit their house and understand their life belief with their family alters and things for their ancestors. That’s a great touch to their daily life.

We have good food or we are so hungry and we eat much or both. We don’t know, but we enjoy that very much. After lunch we have a nap on mats like any local people here with their daily siesta.

After more working in laying bricks to build the toilet are back to homestay by boat, along so beautiful canals with water coconut in the middle of honey sunshine of afternoon.

Vietnam student tour Ben Tre with cooking experience.

The last Vietnam student tour Ben Tre event of the day is a cooking experience. After having a cool shower, we all move to kitchen and the ost instruct us how to cook Vietnam pancake. We cook pancakes for our own dinner, and that’s fantastic.

It’s another long day of Vietnam student tour Ben Tre with service learning, but we are so happy to see many events, to meet many people, to visit many places, and to experience many new things to our life.

The road to future in a Vietnam educational travel




Service project: Construct a paved pathway

When: In March, 2013

Location of service project: In a small community in the Mekong Delta near Ben Tre  City. This community is named Thanh Thuy, belonging to Ben Tre province.

Description of the project:


We did construct a paved pathway for seven of the families in the community to access.  This project will be organized and supervised by Mr. Ba Phuong, a retired soldier and experienced in this area.

Why this project was important?

At this point, it is impossible for the seven the families that live at this edge of the village to afford a paved pathway.  They commute via motor bikes, bicycles and by foot so it is very difficult to do so, especially during the rainy season when the dirt path turns to mud.  This project will greatly assist the community, facilitating an easier way to travel. The villagers will find it easier to transport rice back home by bikes. More services will be able to approach these families such as home appliance repairing. The rain season witnesses a lot of people fall down from bike and even walking. This paved road is far safer, especially for children and school pupils. The road is also a shortcut for villagers to go to the rice farmer faster, then this saves their time for rice field job.  Additionally this project will be a wonderful chance to connect with our service community as we will get a real taste of the family ambiance and have the chance to work side by side with locals.

Why was this project chosen over other potential projects? Exactly the villagers have several things that needs our help. We chose the paved road because this brings the local not only convenience, the safety, the business development, but also the belief of a new road to go in life. The convenience is the ease  and fastness of transporting things home; the safety is for all not to fall down to mud, making clothes dirty and even making themselves injured; business development is to boost up more traffic.

Where there is a new road, there is a new way

What was entailed?

DSC_1334.jpg (400×602)


The path wasl be 574 feet/175 meters long and 23.6 inches /60 centimeters wide.  

We did

  • Clear and flatten the dirt path way  by carrying soil from a canal near there.
  • Cut steel rod and make frame for the road
  • Bring sand, rock, and cement from our vehicle
  • Create wooden forms to contain
  • the cement as it is drying,
  • Mix the cement with sand, rock, and
  • Pour the wet cement within the wooden forms to create the pathway.
  • Create barriers to prevent any people or animal towalk on cement

Who were working on the project with us?

  • Mr. Ba Phuong family ( himselves, his brother and children)
  • The member from 7 families
  • The master of builder who knows well the job