Young people read stories at the exhibition. (Source:cpv.org.vn.)
Themed ‘Longing for a Family’, the exhibition is co-organised by the Vietnamese Women’s Museum and the Vietnamese Women’s Union (VWU).
It covers children’s issues, which are a concern for the community as a whole. It is part of activities to mark the International Day of the Girl Child (October 11) and Vietnamese Women’s Day (October 20). It also marks the Year of Safety for Children and Women, launched by the VWU.
The exhibition features 20 children of different ages from provinces such as Lao Cai, Lai Chau, Son La, Hung Yen and Khanh Hoa. Some live in big cities, while others are from mountainous regions. The children were from a mixture of backgrounds, either living with relatives and grandparents or growing up in orphanages and child protection centres.
It took a long time to approach the children, as they were sensitive and vulnerable, according to Nguyen Hai Van, the museum’s director.
“Our officers talked to them, gained their confidence and encouraged them to talk about their lives and struggles. The hardships they have endured meant it was difficult for them to open up.”
The exhibition is divided into three parts – ‘Turbulent Life’, ‘When I Found a Smile’ and ‘My Dream’. It reflects the hardships of the children, their strong will and how the community engaged to help.
“Through the exhibition, we want to spread a message that we should protect and love children – giving them a bright future,” Van said.
Giang A Sua, 19, and his two younger brothers were abandoned at a young age. Ever since, they have dreamed of having a family. Sua was born in the northern province of Yen Bai. His father died when Sua was eight.
“My mother left the three of us at our grandparents’ house and married another man. We didn’t see her much after that,” Sua said.
He was sent to Hoa Sua, a vocational training school for disadvantaged youth. Now he considers it home.
Sua’s case is one among many. He was abandoned but managed to find another home. He was trained to earn a living. Many other children dream of having a chance like Sua.
The exhibition will run until October 27 at the Vietnamese Women's Museum, 36 Ly Thuong Kiet street, Hanoi.