Since reunification in 1976 and entry into the market economy, Vietnam has seen more economic growth than almost any country in Asia. However, it is clear that many are excluded from the benefits of development. The country is experiencing a mass exodus to the cities, leading to worse access to healthcare and education, and mother and infant mortality rates remain high. In Ho Chi Minh, the number of poor, often migrant families, is high. The cumulative factors of vulnerability and significant difficulties in accessing public or private services for financial or legal reasons, or even down to ignorance leading to self-exclusion. Furthermore Vietnam is today confronted by many difficulties in the areas of employment and professional integration.
Planète Enfants & Développement
in Vietnam since 1993
Since 2011, Planète Enfants & Développement has led a family support programme in District 8 of Ho Chi Minh, in cooperation with the people’s District Committee. This programme has a project dedicated to the nutrition of young children.
Why this project? According to the results of the National Nutrition Institute, in 2014, more than one third of Vietnamese children under 5 years, approximately 3 million children, have suffered from malnutrition and growth retardation. If this is true of rural areas, this is not the case in urban areas which have a large increase in the rate of childhood obesity (12.9% of children) and the trend is on the rise.
This project is to improve the nutritional status of children from 0 to 5 years who are malnourished or at risk. Through the implementation of a local plan (home visits, social guidance and awareness workshops) which allows social workers to follow the most vulnerable families who have little access to basic health services more closely.
Today, almost 20% of Vietnamese children still live in difficult conditions and social players within the country encounter difficulties in the fight against many social and psychosocial challenges. Vietnam lacks professional social workers and many of those already in the service lack the training or experience to support the most vulnerable. Moreover, the services of child protection that exist are often isolated, barely regulated and are struggling to effectively ensure the protection of children. Thus, we have designed a project to help reduce the number of children who are victims of or at risk of mistreatment, abandonment, abuse and exploitation.
Especially in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam is today confronted by many problems in the areas of employment and employability. Thousands of new people enter the job market each year. Yet the economic development of a country requires a sufficient quantity of a skilled workforce . With the vocational training project developed by Planète Enfants & Développement, social workers guide teenagers and young adults from the shelters and those living in the slums to define and make a professional project a reality.
Area: 331 041 km2
Population: 93 million
Life expectancy: 76 years
Literacy rate: 93.2%
Religions: Buddhism 75%, Christianity 7%, 2% Caodaism, Hoa hao 2%
Human development index: 127th/187
Official language: Vietnamese
Source: Department of the French Foreign Affairs and International Development (MAEDI – 2015)
From 2014 to today, there are:
689 children who received home and health assessments,
33 health assessments conducted with an average of 107 children each time,
75% of children who were found to have a satisfactory nutritional status,
12 social workers and 11 clinics that have been trained in infant nutrition.