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Three Orphans of An Phong

An Phong Orphanage in Vung Tau, South Vietnam, was a desperate place. Cold, damp, crowded and dirty, it was a last chance for babies born of mixed heritage.

The children in that lonely human warehouse were Vietnamese fathered by black, white and brown Americans, Koreans, Thais, Aussies... you get the picture. A chld on the street in wartime Vietnam had little chance. A mixed-race child on the street had no chance.

This facility, run by overworked French nuns, had few creature comforts. There was shelter and food, but little human contact... and children died at an alarming rate. The toll on their caregivers was also high.

This shot was taken in late 1971 on the first of my two visits. We tried to help, but our packages provided only a brief respite from the misery that was An Phong.

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