A day at Dam Sen

It is 6 a.m. on Sunday 4th August 2013, when our Maison Chance bus, full of all the material we will need for the day, leaves to Dam Sen, an amusement park located near the center of Ho Chi Minh City.

While Vinh, our driver, is going to the park for the first time of the day, beneficiaries, staff and volunteers are also preparing to leave. This day is part of our ongoing celebrations of our 20 year Anniversary and is just one month after the great evening at the Saigon Opera House, and we are once again gathered to celebrate and spread the word about the wonderful work that continues to be done at Maison Chance.

The schedule is busy but the team is more motivated than ever for this day at Dam Sen. Once there, everyone get down to the preparations. Setting up tables and chairs, adjusting  the sound, children’s make-up … Nothing is left to chance for this day.

By 9 am, the first visitors start to arrive and the entire team of Maison Chance is ready to welcome them … with viennoiseries and pastries! Nothing better to start the day than a little croissant, a mini chocolate croissant or a tartlet prepared with care by our bakers in our own kitchen!

While part of the team were offering these cakes to passersby, our band was going to perform their own concert. Among the songs, one was specially composed by a disabled musician for our 20th anniversary.

Then eleven children came on the stage to dance “Gangnam Style”. The popularity of the song combined with a choreography perfectly mastered readily won over many visitors’ heart.
This was followed by a fashion show perfomed by our little “models”.  The dresses were hand made by teachers of Maison Chance from recycled materials – a colorful show that captivated the audience!

The program continued with a dance on “Down the road”. This is a lively and very energetic dance performed by ten very enthusiastic quadriplegic in electric wheelchairs!
Then, Lanh, Thang and Son showed their acting talent. The three children, who have attended circus courses at Maison Chance, presented a mime performance. Laughter and happiness was evident throughout the audience!

And then, time for games! Visitors took part in the games with enthousiasm. The prizes were soft toys, key chains or bamboo accessories hand made by disabled people from Maison Chance.

Quyen, a disabled beneficiary, hosted the first game. The goal was to answer correctly as many questions as possible on the organization. Of course the Maison Chance participants won hands down! Then, many people of the public took their places in wheelchairs to complete a course. The aim of the course was to reproduce the obstacles that a disabled person may face along his way. This proved to be a fun way to raise valids awareness of the daily difficulties meet by people in wheelchairs.

Finally, a last song was performed by our musicians. A song that gathered young and old, valid and disabled people, passing visitors and members of Maison Chance. A great moment of joy and hapiness to celebrate 20 years of love and sharing.

August 2013