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Medical and Scientific Aid for Vietnam Laos and Cambodia celebrated the provision of 50 years of aid to the people of South-East Asia, in June this year. The event was held at the Churchill Room in the Palace of Westminster, thanks to the invitation of George Howarth MP the charity’s Vice-President, and it was sponsored by the Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Notable guests included Vietnam’s Ambassador Nguyen Van Thao, Lao’s Ambassador Sayakane Sisouvong , and two guests who had travelled from Vietnam specifically for the occasion, Mr Don Tuan Phong, Vice President of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations, and Professor Trinh Ngoc Trinh, Director of the Highland Education Development Association.

During the evening Mr Don Tuan Phong presented the charity with the Vietnam Order of Friendship, on behalf of Vietnam’s President, Truong Tan Sang. The medal is the highest award given to foreigners, and is for “great contributions to building, consolidating and developing friendship” In response Chairman of the Trustees Peter Lidgard said that he accepted the award on behalf of everyone who had supported the charity, past and present.

Following an excellent buffet, guests were entertained musically by a group of Vietnamese students. The event was rounded off with an auction of novel items which raised over £2,000 for the sick and needy in South East Asia.

It was a memorable night, and a fitting tribute to everyone who had donated their time and money to the charity over the past 50 years.