Search

Community volunteering and English teaching at Ba Be 10 days 9 nights

Of the total Vietnamese population of 94.5 million (2016), 9.2 million live below the poverty line and many others remain very near it. Poverty reduction is slowing down, and inequality between the rich and the poor is increasing. There are persistent deep pockets of poverty, particularly amongst the ethnic minorities who make up 14% of the population, yet account for 72% of the country's poor.
Around Ba Be Lake are settlements of ethnic Dao, Tay and H’mong.  They are fortunate to enjoy the benefits of beautiful scenery and seemingly idyllic rural lifestyle, but they struggle with poor infrastructure and inadequate education. The people are resilient and have adapted to a life governed by the immediate needs of their own community, with little input from outsiders.
This is the first scheme to combine a tour with community volunteering and English teaching in Ba Be. The idea is to give you an unforgettable experience whilst aiding the inhabitants nearby in a practical and meaningful way.  Instead of just observing each other from the shore and the tour boat, we can bridge the gap between visitors and villagers in a way that will benefit everyone. All of the projects are initiated only after we have consulted with the communities at the village, town and district level to ensure that each tour brings significant benefit to the schools and communities involved.

 

Type of tour: Private
Tour code: BB39E
Departure date: Daily
Destination: Ba Be National Park
Duration: 10 days
Tour itinerary:
Day 1: Hanoi - Ba Be Lake
Day 2: Orientation, Introduction And Preparatory Visit to Central School
Day 3:  First Real Day At School
Day 4: School Janitors Support
Day 5: Up And Away To The Uplands Of Khau Qua - A Remote Primary School
Day 6: The First Point Primary School Up High Land
Day 7: Up on high with the Dao tribes - Na Nghe village
Day 8: The Last Point Primary School Up High Land
Day 9: Trekking Back To Ba Be Lake
Day 10: Ba Be - Hua Ma Cave - Ha Noi

Day 1
Hanoi - Ba Be Lake (L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Ba Be Lake
You will depart from Hanoi to make your journey to Ba Be National Park. On route, you will visit the commemorative Duom Temple which was built during the Ly dynasty. After some lunch, you will continue to Ba Be lake where on arrival you will have the chance to stretch your legs by exploring a spectacular cave and going on a gentle hike around some nearby villages and along the lake shore. You will be welcomed by your host family in their traditional Tay house in Coc Toc village and where you can get a taste of local life. You will have free time to wander around the village and have a shower before enjoying dinner of delicious local food. Ba Be lake is one of the largest freshwater lakes in Vietnam, surrounded by limestone karst mountains and lowland evergreen forest. It is home to a great variety of flora and fauna, particularly birds and butterflies, and also to local ethnic minorities of the Tay, Red Dao and Hmong people.

Highlights and activities: Ba Be lake with a 3-5 km
Accommodation: Mr Linh's Homestay
Meals: Lunch, dinner
Day 2
Orientation, Introduction And Preparatory Visit to Central School (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Central school
In order to make the most of your visit, you will need to spend a little time on orientation. This will include learning a few words of Vietnamese, considering some dos and don'ts in Vietnamese culture, discussing how we may assist the local teachers and understanding some essential information. After lunch, you will make your first visit to the school. The Central School is housed in the typical national style of yellow lime washed building, proudly flying the Vietnamese flag. Catering to about 220 pupils from all the nearby villages, the school houses the kindergarten (ages 2-5 years), the primary school (ages 6-12) and the secondary school (ages 12-15). Depending on the teachers' needs and your skills, you may be preparing to help with English classes or playing with the young children in the kindergarten. At the end of the day, a family dinner will be served with plenty of time to talk about the excitement of the first day and what lies ahead.

Highlights and activities: a 3-5 km walk
Accommodation: Mr Linh's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 3
First Real Day At School (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-School village ba be
School starts early in the village, as parents need to be at work, so everything must be ready to start in the classroom by 07:00. In the kindergarten, the programme may include morning exercise, drawing, clay modelling, imaginative play, story time, building blocks or music. Maybe you could learn a Vietnamese song with the children, or teach them an English one. If you are able to bring any materials from home, or even buy them locally, we can supply a list of suggestions such as good quality second-hand books and toys. Depending on the teacher's work schedule, you may be able to help with the primary and secondary classes. Perhaps you know some funny songs with actions or games and puzzles that would help with their English. Remember you have to be able to communicate your ideas with very little language. Your day may be exhausting but should be great fun and truly rewarding.

Highlights and activities:  a 3-5 km walk
Accommodation: Mr Linh's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 4
School Janitors Support (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Lunch
Today you will be working on sprucing up the school and giving it a new lease of life. As with any school, there is always plenty of things that need fixing or redecorating so today you will be putting on your handyman or handywoman's hat and helping to create a better learning environment for the students. Jobs may include cutting grass, painting or fixing. The hard graft will be worth it when you see the gratitude of the children. You will have dinner and time to relax in the evening.

Highlights and activities: a 3-5 km walk
Accommodation: Mr Linh's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 5
Trekking in Khau Qua(B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Trekking in jungle
After enjoying a filling Vietnamese breakfast, you will hike uphill through some rugged terrain, taking in the beautiful scenery. Just as you begin to feel hunger pangs, the rural idyll of the Khau Que Village will appear, and lunch will be served in a local house. The afternoon will be spent discovering our new surroundings. The Point of Hamlet School is a lot smaller than the Central School, catering to just 30 local children. Here the pupils will be mostly of the H’mong tribe, and so their life is more basic. We hope to be able to contribute some supplies to the school, and you will stay overnight in a H’mong Homestay.

Highlights and activities: a 13-15 km walk
Accommodation: Mr Linh's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 6
The First Point Primary School Up High Land (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Games
Take a deep breath of mountain air, and start your day by joining in with the communal morning exercises. The ritual of morning exercise is inspired by Ho Chi Minh's Call to strengthen the Vietnamese spirit through regular physical activity. It has become a regular start to the day for all school pupils. Maybe you could introduce a few new nifty moves to the routine. The scale of Point Primary School is smaller so you will assist the teacher in whatever way they want and end the day with various small practical tasks.

Highlights and activities: a 3-5 km walk
Accommodation: Mr Hung's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 7
Up on high with the Dao tribes - Na Nghe village (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Preparing for dinner
Leaving Khau Qua, it will take most of the morning to hike up to Na Nghe village. When we arrive, we will have lunch in the Cash Dao Homestay which will be our base whilst we stay in Na Nghe village. The Na Nghe Point Primary School will be our last stop of the programme, so any remaining school supplies will be given to the pupils here.

Highlights and activities: a 3-5 km
Accommodation: Mr Hung's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 8
The Last Point Primary School Up High Land (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Na Nghe hills
You will start the day with Morning Exercise, (you should be good at it by now!) and assist the teacher with some English, songs, games or activities. Today you will help out with some more practical jobs and have a small farewell party, before spending our last night in the hills in Na Nghe.

Highlights and activities: a 3-5 km walk
Accommodation: Mr Hung's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 9
Trekking Back To Ba Be Lake (B, L, D)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Hiking
After breakfast at the homestay, it will be time to bid farewell to your Cash Dao hosts. First, you will follow trails to Nam Dai Village and then continue through the forest to see the Dau Dang Waterfall which lies within the two provinces of Bac Kan and Tuyen Quang. At lunch, you will be joined by Mr Pirate, the main actor in the "Ba Be Lake Pirate Movie" and then take a boat trip up the Nang River. A visit to the Puong cave will reveal a huge colony of bats, and you can marvel at the stalactites and stalagmites. The boat will pass right through the cave and continue on the river into Ba Be Lake. On the way home you will visit An Ma Temple before returning to the lake shore. Tonight you can enjoy your final dinner in the homestay whilst reflecting on your unforgettable trip. 

Highlights and activities: Dau Dang waterfall, An Ma temple, Ba Be lake
Accommodation: Mr Linh's Homestay
Meals: Breakfast, lunch, dinner
Day 10
Ba Be - Hua Ma Cave - Ha Noi (B, L)
English Teaching and Community Volunteering at Ba Be 10 days-Hua Ma cave
After breakfast, you will travel through the forest and see spectacular rivers, deep valleys, natural caves and lofty mountains. On the way, we will pay a visit to Hua Ma Cave which is a quiet and atmospheric place. You will then continue your drive back to Ha Noi, stopping for lunch at a local restaurant on the way. You should arrive back in Ha Noi at about 17:30 where you will be ped off at your hotel.

Highlights and activities: Hua Ma cave
Accommodation: Not included
Meals: Breakfast, lunch

 

The facts

This programme is designed to provide a bridge between the disadvantaged ethnic minorities and foreign visitors through assisting with the teaching of English, practical help with the fabric of the school buildings and with contributions of much needed learning materials. Visitors will be privileged to experience firsthand the lives of the ethnic minorities and the children, their teachers and the schools will benefit from the help provided.

Climate
From July to September the climate is usually hot and humid.
from October to June the weather is cooler and more pleasant.

Transport
Vehicle with A/C
Boat

Tour Guides, Coordinators
Our experienced and friendly Tour Guides and Coordinators speak excellent English.
They are skilful in group activities and organization and are extremely knowledgeable about local cultures, history and environment.

Tour price will be calculated by private group and depending on departure date, please contact us to book this trip

Tour price includes
Private door-to-door pick-up & -off services
All private transfer and transportation
Home-stay
Experienced English speaking guide.
Private boat trip
Meals as stated in the itinerary (B: Breakfast; L: Lunch; D: Dinner)
All sightseeing tickets
No extra charge after confirmation
24/7 hotline support guaranteed

Tour price excludes
Personal expenses, drinks, tips and gratuities
Travel insurance
Beverages
Other services not mentioned above.

What to take
Pack essentials, including light comfortable clothes suitable for outdoor activities, comfortable walking shoes. Take a small day pack for hiking and trekking.
It is essential to bring your passport on this trip. We also recommend packing: insect repellent, sun cream, raincoat and sun hat...
 
Have a nice journey!
 
SaveSaveSaveSave