COVID-19 has had a significant effect on Hanoi, making it a challenge to travel both domestically and internationally. This has impacted the school’s various service learning groups, including Operation Health Heart (OHH).
Operation Healthy Heart is a high school service learning program at UNIS Hanoi. The group’s mission is to raise money for Vietnamese children with congenital heart defects. These children tend to come from rural areas and are unable to pay for their critical, life-changing surgeries.
Every year, OHH supports at least one child’s heart surgery. After the surgery is over, OHH members visit the child either at the hospital or their home to see how the surgery went and how well they are recovering.
Due to current restrictions on travel and school trips, OHH decided to temporarily pause all visits to the hospital or to the child’s house this year. “It is really upsetting that COVID-19 is the way of visiting the hospital and meeting the children face to face but I am excited to see where this year will take us,” said Rad Kivette, the CEO of Heartbeat Vietnam, the parent organization of OHH.
“I think this year will be interesting for all of us as well as a challenge due to COVID-19,” said Jiwon Han, a Grade 10 member of OHH. “All or even most fundraising events will probably take place virtually. We are not sure where this new approach will take us but we are hoping for the best,” Han said.
Han also mentioned how this will be a new approach to not just OHH but to many other service groups. He emphasized that for the remainder of this year and perhaps for an extended period of time, most fundraising events will be held virtually.
OHH’s art auction will be held around the second week of December with the help of ES students. Currently, OHH is open to any artwork donations and contributions from any artists both in and out of school. The group plans to release more information about the virtual fundraising activities taking place in the near future.