TGVN. Vietnamese classes in Switzerland are still quite modest compared to many other places in the world and Ms. Trang Jena Nguyen’s (Nguyen Thi Thuy Trang) dream is also very simple: her students will soon have a proper class and stable location.

Trang Jena Nguyen teaches first aid to Vietnamese students. (Photo: SSVN)

Those who are interested in first aid and escape skills know Ms. Trang Jena because she is the co-founder of the non-profit program Survival Skills Vietnam (SSVN) in Vietnam, together with, Australia’s leading expert in first aid and rapid response, Tony Coffey. Besides this community activity, now, she also finds another meaningful job, sowing Vietnamese in foreign lands.

From “survival” classes

Lucky to participate in the First Aid course organized by the Australian Consulate for a group of Australian alumni in 2014, Ms. Trang Jena Nguyen quickly realized that this is an extremely important group of knowledge and life skills, but not yet popular in Vietnam. She wanted to bring these courses back to her country and realized that each individual needs to learn survival skills to save themselves and people around.

Therefore, right after the end of the course, she met with expert Tony Coffey to share the general situation that most Vietnamese people are not yet aware of the importance of first aid skills and have not been trained to do so. As a community activist, she earnestly asked the expert to arrange a return to Vietnam to share these skills with her in the community.

With that starting point, the SSVN program was co-founded by her and Mr. Tony Coffey and launched in Da Nang. In 2016, SSVN moved to Ho Chi Minh City. Ho Chi Minh City and operates under the auspices of the Center for Community Health Research & Support (CCHS).

From 2014 until now, SSVN has equipped knowledge and trained thousands of Vietnamese people through community programs at schools, shelters, skill classes for children, pupils, students, adults, and corporate customers.

Despite being a bride to Switzerland, over the years, Trang Jena Nguyen has often returned to Vietnam with training activities, teaching knowledge, first-aid, and escape skills to many people.

At many schools, she and expert Tony Coffey practiced skills to effectively handle injuries common to schoolchildren such as fractures, sprains, dislocations, and drowning. There, the children were also enthusiastically instructed how to help others handle common emergencies such as stopping bleeding, stroke, unconsciousness cases, cardiac arrest, electricity.

… sowing Vietnamese in foreign lands.

Passionate about community activities, Ms. Trang Jena Nguyen’s coming to teaching Vietnamese is also purely coincidental. As a non-specialist teacher, at first, she faced many challenges such as class shortages, incorrect teaching methods…

Returning to attend a training course on teaching Vietnamese for overseas teachers recently organized by the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), Ms. Trang Jena Nguyen loves her mother tongue even more. After participating in the training course and being equipped with valuable knowledge, the connection with her homeland deepened and she clearly saw the new task of maintaining and developing the Vietnamese language in the foreign country.

Now, that amateur teacher feels much more confident in spreading Vietnamese as a foreign language in Switzerland. Not only teaching in Zurich, she still maintains learning German to be able to integrate well into life here. In addition, she also teaches Vietnamese culture to some foreigners who intend to come to Vietnam to live and work.

Trang Jena Nguyen also devotes a lot of effort to support Binh Minh School – a place to teach Vietnamese children living in Switzerland and German communication classes for Vietnamese parents. This school was founded by Ms. Dung Moser a few years ago, so many things are still new and lacking, but there are always enthusiastic and completely voluntary teaching of some Vietnamese teachers.

“Previously, classes in Zurich could only be held if the venue was borrowed for a few hours at a restaurant. Currently, my husband has decided to sponsor a number of classrooms to make teaching more convenient. The good news is that the number of students learning Vietnamese has been increasing. If in the past, teachers had to go to encourage their children to participate in Vietnamese learning, now, parents are looking forward to Saturday to bring their children to class,” shared Ms. Trang Jena Nguyen.

Talking about her current aspirations, Trang Jena Nguyen said that her students need an official and stable place to study compared to today. She also hopes that Vietnamese will become a foreign language taught in schools in Switzerland in the future like some other countries. For her, “where there’s Vietnamese, there is a homeland. The more I understand and stick with the Vietnamese teaching profession, the more I love this volunteer work and realize more clearly that my noble mission to my mother tongue comes from my breath.”

Source: Báo Quốc tế