Trieu Phong, Quang Tri (4 September 2020) – Thanks to a donation from Safelane Global – a UK-based consulting company operating in the field of mine action – Project RENEW has brought positive changes to two survivors of explosive ordnance in Trieu Phong District who can now take care of their own families with confidence.
Triple amputee Hoang Than of Ai Tu Village of Trieu Ai Commune today beamed with satisfaction as he watched his wife and daughter prepare lunch in their new kitchen. The couple and their two children, a 14-year-old son and a 10-year-old daughter, can also sleep soundly without constant worries of leaking rainwater, as their house’s old roof and eaves have been replaced and repaired.
The 49-year-old father also got a brand-new customized three-wheel motorcycle to replace the old tri-cycle he depended on for his daily commute. All these improvements in their lives have been made possible thanks to a Safelane Global donation to Project RENEW.
In 1991, Than lost one hand and both legs, below the knee, in an explosion of wartime ordnance. Than was searching for scrap metal when the tragic accident happened. Permanently disabled at the young age of 20, he was fortunate to get married to a girl in the same village who had loved him before his accident. Their first child, a son, was born in 2000. Two years later, they managed to construct a small wooden house with their limited savings. A second son was born in 2006, but the couple’s joy was short-lived when the older son died in a traffic accident that same year.
“The support from Project RENEW and the community has helped me a lot to keep on going,” Than said. “I am grateful for their support, which has been a strong motivation for me and my wife to strive for a better future for our children.”
Part of Safelane Global’s donation to RENEW also has brought new hope to another survivor of explosive ordnance in Trieu Phong District.
About 10km away from Trieu Ai Commune, landmine survivor Do Thien Dang of Trieu Long Commune is making good use of his new electric tools to cut, reshape, and fashion bamboo inside his newly equipped production facility, with improvements funded by Safelane Global.
Dang lost both legs when he stepped on a landmine in 1980 at age 20. He was collecting wild thatch, then a popular material that locals used to roof their houses. Dang went on to get married and have three children. Project RENEW supported Dang in growing mushrooms and later making bamboo products to earn extra income.
In the village of Bich Khe where he lives, Dang has been much respected for the tender care he gave to his invalid, bed-ridden mother, despite his own disabilities. Since his mother died in March 2020, Dang and his wife now live alone as their children have moved out.
“With these new electric tools and this improved production facility, I now can work much more easily and earn more income,” Dang said. “I sincerely want to thank the donor who has helped me improve my life.”
The 60-year-old grandfather earns about 150,000VND, the equivalent of US$6.50 per day from making bamboo wreaths which he sells to local floral shops in Quang Tri Town.
Hoang Than and Do Thien Dang are among many survivors of explosive ordnance who have overcome their tragic accidents to rebuild their lives, thanks to their own efforts and to support from their communities, and now with assistance from Safelane Global. Project RENEW is grateful to Safelane Global for their generous donation which has allowed us to help Than and Dang to make their lives better and their futures more secure.
Project RENEW was established in 2001 as a joint effort between the government of Quang Tri Province and interested INGOs to “restore the environment and neutralize the effects of the war”.
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