VNHELP stands for “Vietnam Health, Education and Literature Projects.” We are a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing humanitarian and development assistance to Vietnam’s poor. We focus on community building by tackling the key health and education needs of children and the disadvantaged. Our goal is to realize a Vietnam where every individual, regardless of background or standing in life, can achieve self-sufficiency, self-determination, and self-confidence.
VNHELP was formally incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 1991, but its origins really trace back to two years before that, in 1989. That year, the US lifted travel restrictions to Vietnam after more than a decade of sanctions. This decision signified the first time since the end of the Vietnam War that Vietnamese Americans could freely return to the birthland they left following the end of the Vietnam War.
Many of VNHELP’s founders were among that first cohort of Vietnamese Americans to return, and when they did, they personally witnessed the poverty and desolation still prevalent throughout much of the country. They decided they had to do something to help ease the suffering. At first, it was just a couple of small, charitable projects they each ran on their own time: help a few kids get through school, raise funds for an orphanage here, send medicine to a community there. But then, in 1991, the friends who would become VNHELP’s founders got together and realized they could do so much more if they combined their resources. In that moment, VNHELP was born.
Over twenty years have gone by since VNHELP’s inception, and it is now one of the largest Vietnamese American-founded nonprofit organizations providing humanitarian and development assistance to Vietnam. Its programs have expanded to reach thousands of people each year through health, education, and economic development. Moving toward the future, VNHELP will continue to explore new ways to promote sustainable change that not only mitigate suffering, but also uplift people from poverty and restore integrity to their lives.
Whether it’s through grassroots initiatives, strategic partnerships, market-based solutions, or social business, our goal is to give everyone a chance to succeed in life. We won’t stop until it becomes reality.
VNHELP was founded on the vision that people can begin to pull themselves out of poverty and build self-sufficiency through greater access to resources. To help us realize this vision, we partner with local organizations and individuals in Vietnam who have a deep connection to the people and their needs, and we equip them with the tools necessary for success. Our strategy for engagement and development is based on these five principles:
- Health: Develop, promote and maintain various programs related to preventive care and health education in rural areas
- Education: Provide financial assistance to poor students and individuals who have the determination and ability to excel; provide funds to build or repair schools to increase access to education
- Self-Help: Emphasize self-help programs to enable local people and project beneficies to achieve sustainable livelihoods
- Direct Humanitarian Aid: Collaborate with individuals and organizations who share our common goal to bring humanitarian aid directly to the needy people in Vietnam
- Cultural Exchange: Promote Vietnamese culture in the United States through cultural and art events to increase understanding between the two peoples
If you share in our vision of making Vietnam a more equitable and humane country, please consider getting involved with VNHELP.
VNHELP is committed to organizational transparency. Our financial transactions follow the rules and regulations set forth by the IRS. Our books are audited annually by an independent Certified Public Accountant (CPA).
Below is the organization’s financial summary for 2016
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