For the last year Phoung has run a mobile food stall selling sticky rice, pork mince and bread in Dong Van town in Ha Giang province. She also sells simple drinks such as tea and coffee through a partnership with a nearby shop.
Phuong works hard to earn around $500 a month – from 8am to 6pm all year round, often enduring cold and wet weather, with no entitlement to sick leave or holiday. But on the upside she enjoys not having to report to anyone.
She’s unable to find other work because of her low level of education, but she wants to learn English so she can communicate better with tourists and do some cooking training to expand her range of menu options. She is also interested in broader business skills that would enable her to realise her dream of opening a restaurant or café in the future.