In June each year we do a research trip in Phuoc Son District to interview new ethnic students at their homes, if possible, but some live in much more isolated mountainous communities that we can't easily visit, in which case we interview them at their high school.
As all the students are poor, we never know if their situations are worse than they make out. They all are so accepting of their poverty and their humble abodes. We often discover that their situations are much worse than we have been told, and that we discover when we visit their homes.
We help students from this area to keep them in school, so they are educated and can earn a decent living. But also being in school reduce their risks of being trafficked and abused and will delay their marriage. In many of these communities marriage takes place before the legal age in Vietnam and as this is what they parents and grandparents did, it is not questioned.
It's always a very humbling trip.
Home of one of our new students
Home of another new student
Home of another new student this year