August marked a very important milestone for the Room to Read Vietnam team. Nineteen year old Le Thi Tuyet Nga, completed Long Thoi Secondary School to become one of the first scholars to finish Room to Read's girls' education program! After four years of participation as a scholar, Nga successfully passed all exams and has been accepted to two well-known university programs in Ho Chi Minh City. Nga proudly informed Room to Read she has decided to attend the Social Sciences and Humanities University. The Room to Read Vietnam team is elated!
Nga, born June 13 1989, is the second child of four siblings. Nga explained that her family has faced many difficulties. Her parents did not have enough money to vaccinate her as a baby and were unable to even celebrate her birthday when she was young. She expressed that her parents felt bad and it was painful for them to not provide for their daughter. However, she shared that she is not sad about the events in her life or that she may be financially less fortunate. Growing up, her only fear was that she would have to leave school to become a hired peasant or a worker in a factory. She did not want this to be her fate.
The opportunity for an education and a better life are the reasons Nga worked hard at school each day, tried her best, and achieved her academic goals. Without Room to Read Nga believes her parents would have tried to allow her to finish school, but that it would have been extremely difficult for her family. In Nga's words, Room to Read's support "lessened the burden from my parents' shoulders". While Nga greatly appreciates the financial support of Room to Read's scholarship, she says that she has also been affected spiritually and emotionally by the mission of Room to Read and the friends she has made through her participation in the program. Nga finished her story by stating that graduating from high school is only the first step for her life's path. She believes that studying at a university is one of the most important opportunities in one's life. Her goal is to continue to try her best academically, continue to overcome obstacles that arise, and to have a strong career. As she describes it, this path will allow Nga to "support myself, my family, and others."