25th Birthday Gift Fund

The Birthday Gift Fund was originally established in 2012-2013 to celebrate 25 Years of Learning to Inspire at UNIS Hanoi.

As part of the birthday celebrations we wanted to give a birthday gift to our local Vietnamese community, recognizing 25 years of partnership and investing in the next 25 years!

We raised more than 37,000 USD to establish our 25th Birthday Gift Fund, from which project grants were awarded to six different projects.

Some of those projects have become flagship projects for the School's Service Learning programme which is central to our educational ethos.

Find out more about the projects below or read about them in our news section: Your Gifts in Action!

  • Huong La Centre for Disabled and Abandoned Children
  • Australian Charity for the Children of Vietnam
  • Operation Healthy Hearts
  • Microfinance for Change with Bloom
  • Swim For Life
  • Supporting Literacy

The 25th Birthday Gift Fund was made possible through the generous participation of our entire community and especially thanks to our generous sponsors and donors.


Want to know more about the selection process?

You can either explore the links below or download this 25th Birthday Gift Fund Report. 

Funding allocation

On April 17, 2014 the Head of School, Dr Chip Barder approved the unanimous recommendations of the Core Committee and Advisory Group. The 25th Birthday Gift Funds will be distributed in 2014-2015 as follows:


5000 USD


5000 USD


4500 USD


10000 USD


10000 USD


2750 USD


37250 USD

NOTE: The funding for all the projects will be paid over a number of years to promote sustainability

How we raised the money?

1. BIRTHDAY SOUVENIRS             1,500 USD
All profits from the sale of souvenirs designed with the all-school photo taken on UN DAY 

Community members donated their time and talents as auction prizes at Spring Fair 

3. BIRTHDAY BALL                           33,473 USD
Thanks to the sponsorship of InterContinental Hanoi Westlake, Red Apron and Miguel Torres, 90% of our ticket price became donation. Thanks also to VinGroup and all the auction donations, LiOA , International SOS and generous anonymous donors.

Project Selection Process

Process Outline

The process was designed to be as inclusive as possible with opportunities for our community to contribute proposals for consideration, as well as to be involved in the decision making.

There are two key ways in which the School has endeavoured to make this a cross community project:

  1. In sourcing suitable projects for the distribution of funds, the School asked for proposals from students, faculty, parents and alumni. (August to October 2013).
  2. In choosing the final recipients of the 25th Birthday Gift Funds, an Advisory Group and Core Committee were established to assist the Head of School in the decision making process.

In addition to the Community Consultation phase of the 25th Birthday Gift Fund we also worked systematically through all the existing Service Projects at UNIS Hanoi to identify:

  1. Projects that have potential to be significantly enhanced
  2. Projects that could be extended into new areas
  3. New projects that have been recommended by the D-12 team within the context of the D-12 goals and planning.


Projects for Consideration

Submitted by the Community for consideration:

  1. Huong La Centre for Disabled and Abandoned Children
  2. Australian Charity for the Children of Vietnam
  3. Healthy Hearts and East Meets West partnership

Submitted by the Service Learning Team for consideration:

  1. UNIS Hanoi Microfinance For Change  with Bloom Microventures
  2. Swim for Life
  3. The Mobile Book Project

Decision Making

Thanks to the generosity of our UNIS Hanoi community, there were sufficient funds to support all the proposals that were eligible. The process focused on ensuring that the projects would respect the goals and intent of the 25th Birthday Gift Fund and would be a fiscally transparent.

All projects were investigated by a small group before presentation to the Core Committee and then to the Advisory Group before making final recommendations to the Head of School. In order to help ensure that the projects chosen are a good fit for the 25th Birthday Gift Fund, a simple analysis framework was used with the groups.

Agreeing to the development of measurement frameworks and reporting structures in partnership is a pre-requisite for funding to be awarded.

Birthday Gift Fund Core Committee

The Birthday Gift Fund Core Committee is responsible for ensuring a transparent process and to advise the Head of School:

  • D-12 Service Learning Coordinator, Nick Whatley
  • Director of Learning, Janet Field
  • Director of Advancement, Emma Silva
  • Director of Finance, Len Archer

Birthday Gift Fund Advisory Group

The Birthday Gift Fund Advisory Group supported the Committee in research, making recommendations and in implementation of the Fund:

  • ES Service Coordinator, Andrea Limon
  • MSHS Service Coordinator, Maite Monterro Nahoum
  • Community Service Liaison Officer, Thuy Nguyen
  • Marketing & Relationships Officer, Ha Dinh
  • Parent and Advancement Committee member, Nandini Oomman
  • Parent and Advancement Committee member, Clarissa Hu Andersen
  • Grade 11 Student Leader - TBC 2014-2015
  • Grade 11 Student Leader - TBC 2014-2015

For any questions please contact the Director of Advancement, Emma Silva

  • United Nations International School of Hanoi
  • G9 Ciputra
  • Tay Ho
  • Hanoi, Vietnam
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