The St Joseph’s Charity School in Dong Nai recently held an essay contest for the children in Grades 4 and 5.

The children were given the title, How to make the world better and then given 45 minutes to write their essays. The essays were then assessed by three good literature teachers in HCMC. Prizes were then awarded at a special Christmas Party.

Below, the top three essays have been reproduced. They have already been translated from Vietnamese into English.

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ESSAY CONTEST WINNERS

First Prize: HOW TO MAKE THE WORLD BETTER

NGUYỄN KHẢ BĂNGBy NGUYỄN KHẢ BĂNG (Boy) – Grade 5

We are living in a common home. We have to make our world clean and beautiful.

I’ve heard about vendors who do not keep clean our surroundings and do not take care of the gifts that nature has given us. Some people throw garbage anywhere, some just in the sewage system.

If we leave garbage into the sewerage, when the rainy season comes, water cannot flow to the river because the sewerage is stuck. So, water will rise to the surface and sweep away our houses or ourselves while others go on the streets.

And there are those who do not save clean water. Then, one day, our common home will be dried up, the people will all die because of lack of water.

Some people do not respect our seas, either. They make artificial color for products. The leftovers are not destroyed but thrown into the sea or into our beautiful rivers. If they will continue doing this, the fish in the sea or rivers will be killed day after day.

We must keep our environment clean. It is very important. If not, one day, we will lose our houses and our lives. If we don’t save water, someday we won’t have water to survive. If we don’t put toxic things to the sea, we can save fish. We have to save our common home. We have to change the bad habits that harm our environment. If we change our ways, then, we can live in peace and happy with nature.

Second Prize: HOW TO MAKE OUR WORLD BETTER

CAO KIỀU PHƯƠNGBy CAO KIỀU PHƯƠNG (Girl) – Grade 5

I am now living in a world that is very polluted because everybody don’t have a sense to save the environment. My world is like this.

Firstly, everyone doesn’t keep our surroundings clean at all. They put garbage everywhere, throwing them in the river that makes the water polluted with toxic waste so that trees cannot properly grow. They sell food in dirty places.

Nowadays, newspapers and media are talking much about environmental pollution.

Secondly some people are unsanitary. They go at the side of the street or at the foot of a tree although there are some public toilets. So the environment is polluted by them.

Thirdly, the roads are very dirty with mud and potholes.

When I grow up I will do my best to prevent people from vandalizing our environment. I will not allow people to put litter around especially in public places, at rivers and in the parks. They won’t be allowed to step on the flower and the young trees.

They must keep the world as their own homes. They won’t just urinate anywhere but use the restrooms instead. Everyone should please remember that the earth is ours. So, we should protect our environment in order that it will be always be clean, green and safe. No one should be breathing in bad odor and the roads will be clean with no more potholes.

Third Prize: HOW TO MAKE OUR WORLD BETTER

DƯƠNG THỊ HƯƠNGBy DƯƠNG THỊ HƯƠNG (Girl) Grade 5

My common house is the world. I love my house because it is unpolluted and very beautiful.

The vendors and sellers are clean, too. One day, I saw a young woman put litter into the sewage pit. I called her and asked, “Why do you put rubbish into the sewage pit instead of putting it in dust bin? Do you know if you put trash into the pit you will harm the environment?”

And I see some fish sellers throw away rotten fish. I bought and put them in the dust bin. We have to make our house and its surroundings clean. Don’t keep dirty water. When we go to bed we should use a mosquito net so that the mosquitoes cannot bite us.

One day, there was a big hard storm that made my house flooded. I thought the storm was angry because people put litter into the sewage pit.

So, everyone should have a lesson not to put anything into the pit. I have told others that his world is our house and I’m happy when they thanked me.

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