Linda Mato is Head of Social Sciences at Garin College, Richmond, Nelson. During the September school holidays, Linda organised a ten-day trip to Vietnam for 24 students and six adults, including herself, one other staff member, Rachael Carson, the school chaplain, Fr Patrick Bridgman and three parents.
The students flew from Nelson to Hanoi. They explored Hanoi and places such as Halong Bay and the River Delta, Hue and the Perfume River, Hoi An, and Danang to which they journeyed by train.
They took a cruise to the beautiful Nha Trang before flying on to Saigon. There they visited the Cu Chi tunnels, which brought home to the students the horrors of the Vietnam war. They also visited an orphanage and took gifts and money, which the students had fundraised before they left New Zealand. The historical nature of the tour was really impressive and gave the students an opportunity to taste a culture and environment so very different from our own.
Linda did an absolutely magnificent job with the organisation of this trip. She was extremely thorough in her planning and research to make sure that everything went smoothly and was interesting and absorbing to her group of Year 12 and 13 students. Linda put in many hours of her own time and the memories of this trip will stay with the students and adult leaders.
Thank you Linda from the Board of Trustees and staff at Garin College.