UPDATE: A second tropical storm has devastated the region. Please see our new post with updates on help needed for our communities and where we’re focusing our efforts.
While this region of Vietnam does experience an annual rainy season, Tropical Storm Noul, Vietnam’s biggest storm of the year, was especially different in that it had wind speeds higher than normal, leading to at least 6 deaths, over 100 injuries, and a widespread blackout, according to local sources. The homes of many of our HIPE youth had their roofs broken, their farming land destroyed, and their electricity cut off for almost a week.
One of our RONG House interns sent us this video just as the storm began from the front of her house where her mom sells bún bò. We even saw pictures of some of our students studying by an oil lamp during the power outage, though they joked that it was fun because it was new.
Like many households in this area, the main source of family income is from shops like these at their houses. This year, these types of businesses have taken a huge hit due to coronavirus quarantine and now these storms.
And the scary part is that we haven’t even technically started the rainy season yet.
Tropical Storm Noul weakened but prolonged rains led to massive floods, locking many of our staff and volunteers in their inundated homes.
Most of the families have managed to fix their homes and land on their own, but some need our help. Members of the VANGO Network board have made pledges and we have allocated funding where possible.
So far, we’ve raised $5,000 of the $25,000 we need to help these families.
We know your pockets are running dry with COVID-19 relief and election efforts, but if you can, please help us get their homes back.