FOUNTAIN VALLEY — A walkathon to benefit flood victims raised almost $100,000 Sunday from 3,000 Vietnamese Americans who marched in support of family members and others left devastated by Vietnam's worst flooding in almost 50 years.
The daylong event, held under blue skies at Mile Square Park, was one of three fund-raisers organized Sunday by the Vietnamese expatriate community in the United States. Walks also were held in San Jose and Houston.
Organizers said the fund-raisers will help families left homeless and hungry by heavy rains since November in the seven central provinces of Vietnam. Money raised from the walks will be distributed directly to various religious groups in the country, which will decide how to best use the donations, said Peter Nguyen, who helped organize the local march.
"This way we can bypass the government entirely. In the past, some government agencies have handled the financial contributions we've sent to Vietnam and only a small percentage of the funds [was] actually used to help the people," said Nguyen, 36, of Fountain Valley.