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Forum Raffle Beneficiary 2008, Ho Chi Minh City
— The VinaCapital Challenge Campaign for Children’s Hearts

There are 20,000 children in Viet Nam who are waiting for a chance to be a normal, happy child. Children with heart disease miss out on childhood. They can’t dance, they can’t run, many can’t walk across the room without help. Without surgery the child’s life is full of medicines, constant doctor visits and hospital stays. Every episode puts their family deeper in debt.  Every year without surgery puts the child further behind in school …and in life.

The annual incidence of pediatric heart defects requiring surgery in Viet Nam is 12,800 cases with between 4000 and 5000 requiring surgery. The current medical capacity in Viet Nam is about 4000 surgeries per year. So the list of children who need surgery keeps growing. At any given time, there may be as many as 20,000 children waiting to receive surgery. Poor children are usually found at the bottom of the list.  Many children die while waiting for help.

The VinaCapital Challenge Campaign began in December 2005 with a challenge gift of $31,500 from VinaCapital.  Managing Partner Don Lam felt strongly about the program and began to reach out to the VinaCapital family of investors and portfolio companies.  Over $400,000 has now been donated to help poor children who need heart surgery and over 300 children have been saved.

The VinaCapital Foundation was formed in 2006 to facilitate this work and other projects. All costs of the VC Foundation are paid for by VinaCapital so donations are not subject to program costs. In addition, VinaCapital has agreed to match any donation 100%.

The cost of heart surgery in Viet Nam ranges from $400 - $4500.  With matching funds from provincial government organizations and the Sponsoring Association for Poor People, VinaCapital funding can help many more children.

A donation of $600 with these matching funds can save a seriously ill child. Let’s take an example of a case that costs $3000.  This is a serious and urgent case that we choose to place at a small private hospital because the waiting list is too long at the Heart Institute.  A donor would give $600.  VinaCapital would match that donation 100%. VinaCapital would forward $1200 to the hospital at the time of admission.  The local province would forward 30% ($900) directly to the hospital and the Sponsoring Association for Poor Patients would forward 30% ($900).

For further information, or to make a donation, please contact:  Robin King Austin, Executive Director of The VinaCapital Foundation at ,  her Vietnam mobile phone 84 903 927 3850 or her US mobile at 828 446 6789.


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