Emily lives in Hampshire, UK. She has always loved hiking and adventure, and thru-hiking the 2,600 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail has been a long dream of hers, that's why she has made the commitment to complete the PCT in 2022 (delayed from 2021). Raising money for the things she believes in is a crucial element of this trip so Emily has chosen to support KOTO, a charitable cause close to her heart as she has previously lived and worked in Vietnam.
In Vietnam children who live or work on the streets are often called "Bui Doi", which means "the dust of life." Right now, there are millions of children in Vietnam who will go to bed hungry after working a gruelling day of work. They are relied on to support themselves, their families and have limited access to education. With little avenues of help and support available in Vietnam, they are at risk of being exploited for hard labour joining criminal activity or being sexually abused.
In 1999, Vietnamese-Australian & KOTO founder, Jimmy Pham, opened a hospitality training centre in Hanoi, providing at-risk and disadvantaged youth the opportunity to break the poverty cycle by forging a better future for themselves, their families and their communities. Today, KOTO provides 200 [per year] at-risk and disadvantaged youth in Vietnam, an opportunity to undertake a 24-month holistic hospitality training program to end the cycle of poverty and empower them to realise their dreams
The program is entirely free. With a rate of 100% job placement after graduation, our trainees who are now KOTO alumni, are able to support themselves, their family and the community. Without this life-changing institution, at-risk and disadvantaged youth will not be able to grow to their full potential. When we reflect over the past 20 years, there are now over 1,000 graduates whose job titles now include executive, sous chefs, hotel and resort general managers and business owners.