Close to 40,000 disadvantaged students in the central region of Vietnam have been aided 3.7 million USD in the last ten years from a scholarship programme funded by the non-governmental organisation East Meets West (EMW).

Set up in 2004, the Scholarship Programme to Enhance Literacy and Learning (SPELL) aims to provide students with difficulties in Vietnam with a bright future via education.

With its goal of preventing students from dropping gout of school and improving learning quality, the programme has supported children of the poorest households in the seven central localities of Quang Binh, Thua Thien-Hue, Da Nang, Quang Ngai, Binh Dinh and Phu Yen.

After 10 years of operation, SPELL has gained impressive results – a decline in the dropout rate and an impressive pass rate that meets or exceeds the national average. Many of SPELL scholarship recipients have won municipal, provincial and national awards for their academic achievements.

Poor students will have a bright future if they receive support, EMW Country Director Nguyen Minh Chau said, adding they will help their families escape from poverty and make the society prosperous.

“Their success is a great encouragement for us to continue our work,” she noted.

In 2010, EMW set up a university scholarship programme namely SPELL Goes to College (SGTC), which has helped 130 disadvantaged students access university education.-VNA