Posted by Vietnam Swans on January 14, 2011
An Auscham Bulletin has been sent out to the database inviting people in HCMC to a fundraiser to support the Queensland Floods Appeal. It will be held on Monday, 17 January, 6.30pm, JASPAS, Hai Ba Trung St, Saigon. The bulletin, written by Vietnam Swans National President Phil Johns is reproduced below.
[UPDATE: 15 Jan 2011. The Vietnam Swans have been receiving emails from Queenslanders responding to the Bulletin below. Please click onto the "Comments" link at the bottom of this post.]
Flood water is supposed to rise gradually. It’s supposed to have the surface of a peaceful dam. It’s not supposed to act with the ferocity of a Black Saturday Bushfire. But that’s exactly what has happened in Queensland. The Queensland Premier, Anna Bligh says that “people are living in what I call a post war zone”.
An area the size of Victoria has flooded Queensland between Rockhampton and Brisbane. A ferocious “inland tsunami” has crashed through lives and businesses. In the confusion and terror of the moment, we grasp at statistics in an attempt to bring back a sense of order and control. Depending upon the source, there are 15 dead and 61 missing. 15,000 residential and commercial properties have been “affected by significant flooding”. Many will not move back into homes for literally months. The risk of disease and infection is high with a lack of medicine, safe drinking water and food. Then, there are the mental and psychological illnesses that will develop as people struggle to cope with the loss of loved ones and livelihoods.
We, the people of Saigon, now have an amazing opportunity to extend a collective and caring hand of support. Yes we will raise some money which will seem like a drop in a Queensland flood. But, perhaps more importantly, as a community from half way across the world, we will come together to raise that money in a gesture of solidarity. When some individuals in Queensland inevitably find out about people coming together in our city called Ho Chi Minh, they will be shocked. They will say, “That’s amazing. I can’t believe they did that for us”.
For some precious moments, it will ease the pain of their journey to recovery.
JASPAS and Vino, which organised the 2009 Black Saturday fundraiser in Saigon have, again, very generously offered to host a fundraiser. This time, it will be in Queensland’s hour of need.
Date: Monday, 17 January 2010
Where: JASPAS/VINO, 74/7 Hai Ba Trung St, District 1
Price: 300,000VND – draught beer, house red and white wine, basic spirits and snacks
Bookings: Not required. Just turn up with friends and colleagues
Auctions & Raffle Prizes: If you would like to donate a raffle prize or item for auction, please deliver to JASPAS or contact one of the people below.
Contact people: Fiona Terry (Ph 0907 613 947), Derrin Limbrick (Ph 0907 944 8799) and Phil Johns (0933 032 296)
Where will the money go?
The Queensland Government has set up the Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal. All money raised* on Monday evening will be donated to the Appeal (see ). (* JASPAS and VINO will heavily subsidise this event. 100,000VND from each ticket will be used to defray their hard costs in hosting this fundraiser. This means that 200,000VND of the entry price will go directly to the Premier’s Appeal.)
How will the money get there?
The Commonwealth Bank here in HCMC will transfer the money directly to the Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal free of transaction charges and at zero foreign exchange margin.
Making a difference
It’s not often we get to make a real difference. But we will on Monday night.
Please forward this email to friends and colleagues and we look forward to seeing you at 6.30pm on Monday evening.
The death toll associated with the floods in Australia reminds us of the dangers of water. In Vietnam, more children die from drowning than road accidents. Many of these drownings also occur during floods. The Vietnam Swans are supporters of the TriBob Swimming Program in Hoi An, Central Vietnam. Last December, as part of this program, 31 Vietnamese Physical Education teachers became the first to be qualified in Vietnam with Austswim Certificates.
On 14 May 2011, together with Montgomerie Links in Hoi An, the Vietnam Swans will be involved in a charity golf day that will raise money for various swimming initiatives in Vietnam. The golf day will follow on from the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia’s global conference on Drowning Prevention which will be held in Hoi An from 10-13 May.