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Day 24-25, travels to Ha Long Bay

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We are in the gorgeous fishing village of Ha Long Bay! We spend a two days on a boat with European tourists before we head back to Ho Chi Minh and back home. This place is absolutely gorgeous. The boat roams around rock formations and passes by fellow ships. On the itinerary included visiting a cave and a local fishing village. At the fishing village, we get to go kayaking around the bay and some of us even explored small caves nearby. The boat stopped for an hour and allowed us to go swimming in the bay. At night, the ship let loose its anchor and we spent the night enjoying what would be our last travel in Vietnam. Soon, it was time to go back home.

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Day 21-23, Travels to Hanoi

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The next day, we are welcomed in Hanoi to a cool breeze thanks to a rainstorm the day before. This city is the second largest in the country, and looks much like Ho Chi Minh but less populated.

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Day 20, Last Day at Site

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This morning we decide to walk the three miles to site, and once we arrived in the village, we were greeted by a huge crowd of kids! Half of the group split between work with the kids or with the compassion house for the very last time this summer.

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Day 19, Seventh Day at Site

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We finally finish the hole! Took about two days to complete the one meter deep hole with every single VHP member jumping into the pit at least once. Over at Co Chin's house, we were finding creative ways to expose the children to the English language with American entertainment - in today's case, Pokemon: The Movie.

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Day 18, Sixth Day at Site

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After our trip to Nha Trang, the VHP group worked on the compassion house and had major digging to do. While the workers concentrated on cementing the walls of the house, the VHP group worked on digging a ditch deep enough to be an outhouse for the family.  

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Day 17, Travels to Nha Trang

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Today was the longest day of my life! So much done in so little time. Today was our day to unwind and take a break from Quang Ngai before returning the day after to complete our last week at site.

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Day 16, Fifth Day at Agent Orange Rehab Center

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We visited an Agent Orange Rehabilitation Center about 40 minutes away from our hotel. The individuals at this location either live at the center or come from their homes for a few hours. This rehab center provides individuals affected by Agent Orange with physical therapy, education, and overall care.

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Day 15, Fourth Day at Site

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We visit a local bookstore in the village to purchase clay and whiteboards for an arts and crafts activity and a conversational English activity for the day. There is no need to teach the kids to create using clay! Creativity is something that is in them, naturally.

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Day 14, Third Day at Site

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It's only the 3rd day at site, but the house is coming along great! Since the walls are getting higher it's not very safe for VHP members to brick-layer, so most members stayed down low on the ground. No ladders were used to work on the higher walls: the locals stood on a wooden plank balanced by metal poles. We piled bricks and buckets of cement onto the wooden plank for the workers.

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Day 13, Second Day at Site

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For approximately the next two weeks, we will arrive at site around 8am, take an hour or two break at noon, and return to site to volunteer for another 3 hours. Everyday, we divide into two shift: one group will work with the village's children and the other will work on the compassion house. We alternate shifts in mornings and afternoons to give those who worked on the compassion house a rest for the rest of the day.

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