Disability doesn't stop philanthropist from helping others in similar situation

April 21, 2022 - 08:07

Lê Viết Thuận, a disabled person with congenital cerebral palsy, is trying his best to help others in the same situation, spreading goodwill wherever he goes.


Lê Viết Thuận (second row, centre) at an event to present gifts for disabled people. — VNA/VNS Photo

BẮC GIANG — Lê Viết Thuận, a disabled person with congenital cerebral palsy, is trying his best to help others in the same situation, spreading goodwill wherever he goes.

The 31-year-old was born in Hương Lâm Commune, Hiệp Hòa District, northern Bắc Giang Province.

He is one of 50 examples of young people with disabilities who were honoured in the programme entitled ‘Shining Việt Nam Spirit’, organised by the Central Committee of the Việt Nam Youth Union last year to acknowledge the efforts and positive contributions of outstanding people with disabilities to society.

At just five months old, Thuận suffered a severe burn, affecting his health seriously.

While spending nine years in bed, Thuận always wished that one day he could go to school and play with other children.

After many surgeries at the National Institute of Burns, the doctors said that the recovery rate could reach 70 per cent, and Thuận could walk.

He started to exercise, even though the falls made him cry. He did not give up. His grandpa made him a bamboo stick to help him walk.

After six months of exercise, Thuận was able to stand up without assistance and could walk normally at the age of 11, if a bit slower than the other children. 

Thuận wanted to go to school, but couldn't as he was over the age of a first-grader. His family called for help from relatives and he was finally accepted.

At first, Thuận was teased, bullied and shunned by his classmates due to his unusual appearance. 

The learning was also difficult due to problems with his hands, meaning he had to write with his left.  

The encouragement of his family and the desire to study helped him overcome it all. 

His classmates also stopped teasing him and played with him.

Thanks to his unremitting efforts and perseverance, he completed 12 years of study with good academic performance and entered the university entrance exam.

He was so happy when he received the notice of admission to the Academy of Educational Management and the University of Social Sciences and Humanities (The Việt Nam National University).

Thuận chose to study social work at Hà Nội's University of Social Sciences and Humanities with the desire to be able to help people with similar circumstances.

Thuận faced many difficulties when he first moved to Hà Nội. He actively participated in school activities, classes and clubs for students with disabilities in the capital city.

After graduating from university in 2018, he applied for jobs in many businesses but was rejected for poor health. 

Thuận decided to return to his hometown to find a job and connected with many young people with disabilities in the province.

He found that Bắc Giang province did not have a club for the disabled youth, so he had the idea to establish a club to help connect young people with disabilities in sharing, sympathising and helping each other in life. 

Thuận's idea was quickly approved by the provincial Youth Union and he was assigned to be the head of the provincial Disabled Youth Club.

As the club's president, he always tries to develop the club and help more young people with disabilities. 

Thuận worked to make identity cards for club members with severe disabilities, raise charity funds to buy wheelchairs and present gifts to his members.

He also collaborated with the University of Social Sciences and Humanities to implement the programme "Dream to go to the university in 2019" for club members.

In 2020, Thuận and some young union members in the province set up a charity fund to help unfortunate lives, the disabled, the poor and the elderly in difficult circumstances. 

Up to now, the club has 31 members and established three more clubs in Yên Dũng, Lạng Giang and Hiệp Hòa districts. Another club is expected to be established in Việt Yên District.

Thuận wishes to develop the club into the Association of People with Disabilities in Bắc Giang Province, in order to connect and help more people with disabilities. 

"Physical disability is not scary. Soul and spirit disabilities are scarier. No one can help if people with disabilities do not have the will to rise," Thuận said.

"Therefore, people with disabilities should strive to rise up and take advantage of every opportunity to study, exchange, and find a job, so they will not a burden to their family and society." — VNS