VoY Inspire! Project Penguin

no picture Lam Ngô
Member since November 25, 2015
  • 25 Posts
  • Age 19

Someday in the near distant future, our ice caps are going to melt. It's not an if, not a maybe, it's a reality. If you live near the coast, prepare to move. If you live inland, prepare for refugees coming your way.

And if you're Miss Lan Cung - a Year 4 teacher at British Vietnamese International School - you prepare for a trip to the snow-covered (for now) Antarctic and figure out what's happening.

1. So could you tell me about the trip?

This trip is organised by 2041, an organisation devoted to raising awareness and finding solutions to glacial melting. Robert Swan is the leader of the expedition and he will also be talking to us about the effects and causes of glacial melting. After this trip, I will talk to local governments and organisations for their help in reducing the negative impacts of global warming. To be honest, these talks are the one I'm most nervous about!

2. What inspired you to take on this trip?

The first time I heard of this was this January. I put together a presentation about myself, about Dr Rebecca Lee and Al Gore's theory. When I got accepted, I was so excited! The prospect of actually going to the Antarctic is amazing!

As a Vietnamese, I feel personally involved as Vietnam is one of the six countries most affected by this. Our Southernmost region is only 1m above sea level and is threatened greatly by the glacial melting adding to the sea height!

Also something that inspired me was how dedicated my school was. BVIS has chosen ‘Penguins in the Antarctic’ as the theme for all their activities in the upcoming year. There will be souvenirs, books, pictures, even soft toys based on the students' own designs.

3. Antarctica is not known to be a cruise holiday. How are you preparing for it?

Well, I think when people hear “Antarctic”, they immediately associate it with harsh snow and unforgiving climate. My family is the same, they keep asking me if I will have anyone close to me travelling with me to keep me safe. But the trip, in my opinion, is relatively well thought-out. My equipment will be provided by the program, my school is giving me a workout schedule to enhance my stamina and I am already swamped with warm clothing and supplies given by friends!

Interesting fact I came across: the first Vietnamese person to go to the Antarctic is a woman, and when she came back some ten years later, she brought along a whole group consisting of 5 other women and a single male member. So obviously, Vietnamese women are much tougher than people think!

4. The question of the day - are you going to see penguins?

You know, I asked them that, and we will. Our ship will come across a whale sighting location and past a beach inhabited by seals. Afterwards, we will land on the penguin territory, and there will be hundreds and hundreds to cuddle and take selfies with.

We wish you a safe and enjoyable trip!

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