Hands for Hope Vietnam Children Charity

How and when was H4H established?

In the early 2000 a group of young Vietnamese Australians formed an appeal to help assist victims of a major flood crisis in Vietnam. Following this event they decided to maintain the dedication and continue helping unfortunate rural town children living in poverty. Hence H4H was formally and legally registered in Australia on 23rd March 2001 as Hands for Hope Inc under the 1981 Incorporation Act, with Registration number A0040881V.

What is the group’s mission or aim?

H4H strives to assist disadvantaged children in Vietnam to become self sufficient to lead a healthy and productive life within their community.

Does H4H hold any Political or Religious beliefs?

H4H strictly does not encourage or enforce any Political or Religious beliefs. It is a non-profit, non-political, non-sectarian and non-religious charity that aims to better the life conditions of disadvantaged children living in poverty.

How does the H4H management team operate?

There are nine management committee members; each is responsible for recruiting and gathering resources to accomplish the targets of their respective role. All team members meet on the first Sunday of every month to discuss key points on our agenda and to communicate with group members our project updates and progress. Meetings are often held at members’ home or community centres.

How often does H4H’s management team get elected and when is the next election?

The management team gets elected every 2 years; our next election will be held in 2010. Registered group members who have regularly attended monthly meetings are eligible to be nominated for management roles.

What types of projects has H4H successfully accomplished?

H4H has successfully accomplished and is still currently maintaining the following key projects:

  • Education Sponsorship Program
  • School Construction & Repair Program
  • Corrective Surgery Program
  • Social Welfare Initiatives

Further details about each individual project are available on our web site.

How many children has H4H sponsored in the past few years?

Over 1200 children have participated in the education sponsorship program over the years, over 800 are currently active.

Who is eligible for the H4H sponsorship?

H4H will take into consideration sponsorship of students who are living under impoverished condition and could potentially miss out on schooling because their family cannot meet the cost of the student’s education.

What selection criteria does H4H use to select a sponsored child?

Selections are generally made on a project level where a collection of students from the same region request for assistance through representation by a local person or charitable organization. Selections decisions are made based on site visit reports by one of Hands For Hope’s project coordinator. Each project submitted to H4H for consideration will be visited by a H4H’s project coordinator, an evaluation on the level of poverty of the region and of the children’s families’ income, needs and family situations. Selected projects often go through a trial period to assess the effectiveness of H4H’s intervention and the reliability of local contacts.

Who are H4H representatives in Vietnam and what are their roles?

All H4H representatives are from Australia and make regular trips to Vietnam to coordinate project works. H4H does not have any representative permanently living in Vietnam. However, each project has a local contact to assist H4H in administrative tasks and as a contact point for communication to the students.

How often do members visit Vietnam to personally interact with the sponsored children? How are the associated travel costs funded?

H4H members travel to Vietnam on a regular basis to carry out project activities, review existing project and interact with sponsored students. All members have traditionally elected to travel using their own money to fund their trips.

How much does it cost to sponsor a child?

The cost for each student generally depends on the level of study being undertaken and sometime special needs by students in a particular project/region. Typically a primary student receives annually around $30-$35, middle school $45-50, high school $60-$70 and university $150-$200.

How are funds transferred to sponsored children overseas?

Funds are distributed to students via 2 ways:

  • H4H project coordinators take the money on their site visit and hand out to each individual students family
  • H4H transfer the money directly (via telegraphic transfer) to the local project contact who distributes the money to each individual student’s family

All payments are recorded and verified by each recipient

Does H4H have any newly proposed or planned projects for the near future?

New education projects are given an opportunity to be proposed once a year and go through rigorous scrutiny by the management board. Other projects such as infrastructure and medical project type are proposed at ad hoc based on coordinator’s availability to travel and carry out the project work

What is the annual administrative cost?

Our administrative cost circa 3% of the total donated and fundraised funds. Our team of unpaid volunteers takes care of all administrative tasks and some individuals regularly offer to absorb travelling expenses incurred from project work in order for more of the donated funds to reach those children that are in need.

Who are the majority of H4H’s donators and sponsors?

The majority of H4H’s supporters are local businesses and people in the community, more so in particular the Vietnamese community in Victoria.

What do I receive as a sponsor?

Firstly, your sponsorship donation will be acknowledged with an official receipt, together with a profile of the student you are sponsoring. H4H take great care in protecting the privacy and security of the students. The students’ profiles are only made available to their sponsors, with the understanding that it is for personal reference and not to be displayed or published in public forum.

At the end of the school year, you will receive the students’ school results and when available, letters from the students themselves. You will also receive a renewal notice in which you can decide whether to continue the sponsorship for another year. There is no obligation for renewal and the student loosing your sponsorship will be put back into the queue waiting for the next available sponsor.

Can I call / write letters / visit the student/s I sponsor?

Yes, it is possible to make contact with the students you sponsor. To protect the privacy and security of the students in our sponsorship program, all contacts must be made through Hands for Hope. Direct visits can only be arranged when our project coordinator is available to accompany you on site.
Please keep in mind there can be logistical difficulties and other sensitive matters to consider when making contact with the students. For example, the remoteness of some regions means that telephone and postal services may not be readily accessible. Or the student’s literacy skills may not be adequate for them to feel comfortable with regular letter writing.

Who are the H4H team members?

H4H member volunteers are a group of young Vietnamese Australians who dedicate their time to the charity to help make a difference in the lives of less fortunate children in Vietnam.

How many members are currently involved in the H4H team?

H4H currently has over 50 registered members dedicated to the team.

If I’m a new volunteer, how can I contribute to H4H?

There are many opportunities and work currently available for people who wish to volunteer. Generally new members will be asked to help out in fundraising events such as our yearly walk-a-thon, dinner and New Year festival stalls etc. In addition to that there are many administrative tasks available in many areas such as Project Management, Finance, IT, Business Sponsorship & Grants. You may also actively get involved in our major projects by being part of the project team, coordinating the activities and travelling back to Vietnam to work with our local project contacts, visit the schools, corrective surgery team and the children we sponsor.

What team activities does H4H offer to group members?

H4H regularly holds fun and exciting team building activities for its members. We organise members camping trips twice per year, Christmas parties and occasional bushwalking, picnics, movies, drinks night and other group gathering events for members to enjoy together. All expenses at members’ own costs since our group funds are reserved for charity work only.

How do I join H4H?

New members are always welcome. All you need to do is contact us, attend our next monthly group meeting, fill out a form and make a yearly $2 fee payment to be registered as a member.

How can I make a donation or sponsor a child?

By going to our donate page, or by calling (+61) 0403 569 121 or by write us a cheque – make payable to “Hands for Hope Inc” to us at PO Box 809 Sunshine MDC VIC 3020, AUSTRALIA.

Are donations to H4H tax deductible?

H4H send all donations over to Vietnam to support disadvantaged children. Therefore we do not currently meet the requirement for tax deductibility (DGR status) which requires a certain proportion of the donations to remain in Australia. We are unable to provide you with a tax receipt, however, we do provide official receipts for your own records.