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Saigon man offers hand-me-downs to needy people ahead of Tet

Thursday, January 31, 2019, 09:00 GMT+7
Saigon man offers hand-me-downs to needy people ahead of Tet
Nguyen Van Huong (right) receives a bag of second-hand clothes from another man at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

A man in Ho Chi Minh City has placed in a public area boxes of free second-hand clothes in the hope that poor people have something new to wear during the upcoming Lunar New Year (Tet) holiday.

In the celebration of Tet, the country’s most important and longest holiday which starts next week, people would buy new clothes to don during the festive time, believing that it will bring in good fortune in the new lunar year.

But a Ho Chi Minh City resident, Nguyen Van Huong, thought of people living in poverty, who cannot afford decent meals, let alone new clothes.

Huong has thus taken it upon himself to place several wooden boxes on the premises of the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in the city’s Tan Phu District.

A woman rearranges clothes put in a box at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman rearranges clothes put in a box at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman chooses clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman chooses clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

He put his family’s hand-me-downs and old shoes in the containers and hung a sign above that reads “Take if you need.”

Many people have joined hands with him by adding their used clothes to the boxes, making the piles of clothes grow larger and larger since they appeared nearly a week ago.

“There are many disadvantaged people,” Huong said. “I thought of making this clothes-offering boxes in my free time.”

“Some items I wore only once and I didn’t know what to do with them.

“I believe that they might be useful to others.”

Explaining the words written on the sign, he said giving second-hand clothes directly would put the receiver in an embarrassing situation and it would be much better to place items in a public place so that anyone in need can take them.

Women choose clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The laminated paper sign reads ‘Give if you have.’ Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
Women choose clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The laminated paper sign reads ‘Give if you have.’ Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman chooses clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman chooses clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman chooses clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre
A woman chooses clothes at the Son Ky 1 Apartment Building Complex in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Next to the sign was another one for those who want to donate their own used clothes, reading “Give if you have.”

Huong also hopes the items placed in the boxes are delivered to residents in remote areas.

Nguyen Ai Hoa, a lottery ticket vendor, said many of the clothes looked very new and she would bring them home as uniform for her children.

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