Thuong's Story - Artist, Leader & Entrepreneur!

Thuong proudly displays some of her beautiful art work - available for sale online at www.thuongthuong.net

My name is Nguyen Thi Thu Thuong and I come from Vietnam. I am a manager of Thuong Thuong Vocational Training and Job Creation Center. First of all, I would like to say thank-you to CLAN for caring about young people living with a chronic disease in Vietnam, especially those with OI (Osteogenesis Imperfecta) and DMD (Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy).

Please watch the VIDEO below to see how we make our beautiful artwork!

My Early Years

According to my mother’s story about my childhood, I had a very big head, green/blue eyes and a reversed look when I was a newborn baby. I cried and even burst into loud wails every time I was having my diaper changed. My parents were so worried, and they brought me to visit the doctor. The doctor diagnosed that I suffered from OI (Osteogenesis Imperfecta) and said my bones were brittle and easy to break. During my childhood, my bones were broken lots of time and I couldn’t go to school as my peers did. Thirty years passed and I have been like a 5 year old child... I cannot move, cannot stand, cannot sit, but can only lie down. Though I get older it is still easy for my bones to break if I am unlucky and get an impact of any sort. But this is not a reason to give up my life - it inspires me to build a beautiful and meaningful life for me and other people living with disability.

An Entrepreneur Helping Others!

Today I own a Vocational training and Job creation Center named Thuong Thuong at Nam Phu village, Nam Phong, Phu Xuyen, Hanoi. This center is creating jobs for over 10 disabled people, and they come from every place in Vietnam. They come here not only for work but also it is their second home. Our products are handmade ones, souvenirs, essentially quilling paper art. It takes a long time to finish the products because they are made by disabled people. They only know one step not a full procedure to make a product. For example, with a picture of CLAN's logo that we made, it took 2 days to finish one product, and its price is 300.000 VND ($16 AUD).

I was so glad when I heard the good news from Mr. Doan – President of Vietnam's DMD Organisation - that he will take order for us to make products. To be a founder of the Center, I am looking for purchase orders to create jobs and monthly income for members as well as expenditure to cover their daily lives. Truly I hope that CLAN and organizations give us opportunities to bring our products to all over the world or projects to support us, or by multimedia to advertise us, help us to contact with customers who are in demand of our products. This really help us to improve our lives and believe in our jobs that requires detailed efforts and carefulness.

Would You Like to Purchase Artwork With Heart & Soul?

We have a website: www.thuongthuong.net. You can order online or email me via thuongthuong.net@gmail.com

At present, the Center has vocational positions supporting young people living with DMD, OI and other conditions where individuals can manage personal hygiene independently. As I know that there are many people who suffer in OI as me, they always desire to work to get a better and meaningful life but their disabilities are so serious that they cannot manage personal hygiene independently, so we would like to identify a sponsor from society who might contribute this amount so we can hire a personal assistant to clean and wash for them, in order to make them confident to work in our center or in their own home, so that they will be more empowered and self controlled in making decisions about their lives. It is my wish to continue working well and hard to support disabled people in Vietnam.

To conclude, I would like to say “Please trust us and give us a chance to work. We are down but not out!”.

I’m looking forward to seeing you someday. Thank you so much for reading this!