No 25 Alley 18/163 An Duong Vuong, Tay Ho, Hanoi, Vietnam

Inspirational woman : Anh is writing a new chapter

Inspirational woman : Anh is writing a new chapter

Anh is a single mom but above all, an inspirational woman who gives us the proof that if you keep fighting you can build the life you dream of. I met her, 24 hours before her departure to Ho chi Minh to ask her how she feels before the beginning of her new life.

You are NOT thirty-five,” I accused.

Anh smiles at me, her eyes twinkling with youthful mirth.  “Yes, I am.”

“No, no, no.”

This is a snippet of the conversation I had with Anh over dinner a few days ago.  How she puts up with me, I do not know.

Anh is a member of the Hanoi Tay Ho team.  Alongside Little Hong and Bich, she makes sure that everybody is well looked after.  In my four weeks with her, not once has she raised her voice at anyone or anything.  Always kind and ready for a smile, she holds herself with an easy grace that could almost be regal.  Her gentle calmness rubs off on all of us, most of all her affable little baby boy.  Our single mothers look up to her, going to her for advice and deferring to her judgments.

Beneath her softness is incredible strength.  Anh, a mother with her little baby boy, is about to uproot herself and move across the country. Today, the Tay Ho team will be bidding Anh goodbye as she leaves Hanoi for Ho Chi Minh City, almost 2000 kilometres away, to start a new chapter of her life.  Anh will be leading the Coins for Change project in Saigon.

I asked Anh if leaving everything behind to start afresh in a foreign city scared her. Anh explained that she was nervous about how her life was about to change and worried about things going wrong. But to answer my question, no, she was not scared. Before having Baby Vu she would never have contemplated doing anything like this, but being a mother gave her “special courage”. This was an opportunity for her to not only change her and Baby Vu’s lives but also the lives of many other women like her. Anh is determined to overcome this challenge. Anh tells me that she will prove to herself that she can do anything as long as she puts her mind to it. I have no doubt she will


Anh faces a demanding role in Saigon.  She will be overseeing the running of the Saigon household, supporting the single mothers, staff members and volunteers in their roles and seeing to their needs.  On top of that she will be organising the opening of new English classes that will fund the support of other single mothers. It will be a test of the skills that she has been honing in Tay Ho.  We will be cheering her on.  Anh, if you get lonely in Saigon, remember your friends back here in Hanoi are thinking of you.  Remember that you are an inspiration to all of us.

We send with our dear friend Anh all our love and best wishes. Our Saigon team has just struck gold!

By Joanne Ng

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