Platypus is a Perth charity formed by a group of 6 friends in Perth in 2012 to lend a helping hand to deserving families in Vietnam. The charity now has more than 160 supporters.
The Charity’s main aim is the education of children from poor families in 6 districts of 2 provinces of Vietnam. The majority of our students are from ethnic minority groups, where almost 50 groups represent about 15% of the population. Platypus supports 100 Hmong, Dao, Nung and Han (Chinese) students in the north-western mountainous Ha Giang province along the China border. Ha Giang is probably the poorest of all provinces in Vietnam, so Platypus Charity also runs a couple of other programmes there. In Quang Nam province in Central Vietnam, close to the city port of Danang, Platypus Charity supports 100 school students of the Kor, Kadong, Monong, Nung, Thai and Cotu minorities, as well as those of the majority Kinh.
Platypus Charity currently supports 2 students at university. A young lady is head of her class at a prestigious university in Ho Chi Minh City, having been an outstanding Platypus student at school for 4 years. A young man at university in Danang will be average at best, but his circumstances are tough and graduation will be a massive achievement.
A youngster rescued from the rice paddies at 10 will be attending university in Hanoi in 2018, having topped district results for the past several years.
Platypus has 2 additional programmes in Ha Giang to combat poverty, and thanks to growing support in Perth we are delighted at the success to date of both plans:
Piggybank A piglet sow is gifted to a family, with the only condition being that a female piglet from the first future litter is gifted to another family living in poverty. The initial gift of 27 piglets has seen some 50 families work their way through the poverty cycle. A family that lost its first gifted pig has since received another: we want everyone to get a fresh start and that is what our supporters expect us to do. Our target for 2017 is a hefty 100 piglets. Our best outcome to date is a litter of 11 piglets that will see a poor family enjoy its best--‐ever payday, and there will be future such days twice a year. The gift that keeps on giving!
Micro‐banking: Interest-free loans of A$330 are made to poor families for 2 years, with extensions granted when required. We lend to the unbankable families and are fascinated at the entrepreneurial skills that have emerged from families that have not previously had access to capital.
Random acts of kindness
Platypus occasionally participates in Random Acts of Kindness (ROK) as identified during our motorcycle fund-raising rides around Vietnam. A kindergarten floor here, a kitchen there or perhaps a wheelchair supplied by a generous Aussie organisation and delivered to a youngster up in the high country. We seldom cherry pick – we are there for the battlers and that is where we will remain for as long as people want us to support good causes. On rare occasions we seek to help develop an exceptional talent.
More information on Platypus is available here