This week - something different for the Blue Dragon blog!
To give readers some more insight into what life is like here at Blue Dragon in Hanoi, I'm planning to write an entry each day this week about what I've been doing and what's been happening in our charity.
While I usually try to write a couple of stories each week, there's so much that does not get said... so here goes an attempt at filling in some of the gaps!
I skipped football this morning because... well, ok, because it's really hot and I wanted to sleep in. And seeing as my only job there is unpacking drinks, the staff are fine without me! So on to a morning catching up with friends, including a farewell lunch with an old friend, Adam Gordon, who is heading home to Europe in a few days.
This morning I did get to chat briefly with some of the parents of kids in our program who have kids with disabilities. One Sunday each month they gather at the Blue Dragon centre with our staff member, Phuong, to take part in a 'self help' group. The parents love this group - they run it themselves, with a proper agenda each month, but much of it is about sharing ideas and experiences with other parents in similar situations. They were all smiles when I saw them!
And then in the evening I headed off to Noi Bai airport to meet Nam (not his real name), the Blue Dragon teenager who has been studying in Singapore on a scholarship. School's out, so Nam is home for the summer hols. A couple of the kids came with me and we had a terrific taxi ride back into the city, laughing and joking and looking over Nam's report card. (Pretty good- in fact, Nam earned a certificate of commendation from the principal!)
While I was at the airport I received a call from Giang, our Social Work Coordinator: one of the Blue Dragon kids has been arrested and the police have called us to come down to the station. Our Child Rights Advocates are dealing with this as I write, so I'm not yet sure why the boy was arrested.
Overall, a relatively quiet Sunday!