KOTO is recovering from Covid, but we need your help!

Updated: Apr 9

Dear Friends,

It feels like the coronavirus came out of nowhere. One day our KOTO on Van Mieu restaurant was packed full with hungry tourists but the next it was sitting empty in a lockdown.

At the same time, out in Yên Viên, there were 134 nervous trainees holed up in our training center. I was worried sick that we might never go back to work. That I might have to send them all home and crush the dreams we had spent so long building.

It was tough and it was scary and, if I’m honest, I’ve never been more anxious in my life - we had no idea what would happen in a week, let alone a month, let alone one year.

But here we are one year on and we’re still puttering along albeit a little slower than we have in the past.

The restaurant on Van Mieu was unfortunately unsustainable when the tourist trade disappeared and closed, sadly, in August of 2020. In November, however, we opened our new restaurant in a quiet alley in Tay Ho serving Hanoi’s expat community a variety of tasty dishes. It has been a hard slog but we are finally beginning to see the fruits of our labour.

But… and there is always a but… it has been costly. Keeping our students fed and clothed and sheltered through this transition period has not been cheap. Our costs have not changed but our income did take a substantial hit.

And so I am asking for your support once again. I am asking that you dig deep but not to donate but rather give