Dear Family and Friends,
As most of you are aware, I have been living abroad and teaching English in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam for the last year and a half. It has been the most exciting and rewarding experience of my life, but after 2 Christmases away from my family in Pittsburgh, I am ready to come home for a bit to spend the holiday season with my mom, dad, brother, aunts, grandmas, and all the rest of you lovely people!
Due to the coronavirus, schools were closed entirely in February, and I recieved no income. In March and April, I was able to work online, but my company cut 33% of my salary. While I feel fortunate that Vietnam reopened schools in May and my salary is now back to normal, it created a financial strain that I'm still recovering from. The real kicker is that I was supposed to recieve a severance payment and a resigning bonus in March that was budgeted to cover my airfare, with a bit left over for Christmas presents and spending money. My company has decided not to retroactively pay out those bonuses, so now I'm out about $1500+ and at this point, I don't think I will be able to save enough to come home for Christmas this year.
I'm starting this campaign a month before my birthday, so that you may gift any amount that is reasonable for you at the moment, to fund my trip home and the costs associated with taking unpaid vacation time from my job. I recognize that this is a financially trying time for everyone, but every little bit adds up, and I would be so grateful for any amount you can offer. And if you can't help financially, I only ask that you share this campaign and/or send me love and good vibes over the next six months as I save my butt off... so that (hopefully) I can freeze my butt off with my family on Christmas :P
Thank you for taking the time to read, and please take care of yourselves <3
(Disclaimer: If coronavirus social distancing continues into the fall, I'll still try to come home. The only things that will stop me are no flights to the US, ridiculously expensive flights, or a lengthy quarantine at either border. In this case, I may suspend the campaign, or the money raised will be used to make the trip at a later date.)