The Veterans Viêt Nam Restoration Project (VVRP) is celebrating its 24th year as a not-for-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) in service to veterans. Every year VVRP sends teams of veterans, their family members, and others, back to Viêt Nam to reconcile with the Vietnamese by working together on humanitarian endeavors, such as building primary schools, medical clinics, vocational training centers and housing for the disabled. This return journey helps the veterans deal with the emotional distress of their wartime experiences while giving something back to a country so devastated by hostilities. Most VVRP team members return from this experience feeling they benefited far more than they contributed.
VVRP was founded in 1988 by Fredy Champagne, a Viêt Nam veteran, and other veterans from the Garberville, California area. The initial VVRP group of veterans, Team I, arrived in Viêt Nam in January 1989, becoming the first American NGO allowed to implement a humanitarian service project in Viet Nam following the war. Its 15 members spent two months building a primary health care clinic with the Vietnamese, in the southern port city of Vung Tau. Since that time the VVRP has sent 26 teams to Viêt Nam, as of May 2011. More than 160 veterans have had the unique experience of returning to Viêt Nam with fellow veterans, as a member of a VVRP team.
VVRP relies entirely on the generosity of its donors to cover project cost and administrative expenses. The organization only has one paid staff member; a part time bookkeeper. Board members and friends volunteer their services to perform all other tasks, such as veteran recruitment, team formation and orientation, fundraising, and project selection and coordination. Team members cover their own travel and housing expenses. The Vietnamese communities also help with project funding. (More: The Founding of the VVRP)
As you explore our website please consider joining one of our teams or making a contribution so we can continue to assist veterans and the people of Viet Nam, by
“…building the future, healing the past…”