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Vietnam

We've been working in Vietnam since 1990, helping disadvantaged children and their families. With the government, we're improving healthcare for mums and young children, supporting better nutrition and learning, and helping children stay safe.
Children and their mothers play during an educational 'Building Brains' session in Van Chan District, Vietnam

Children and their mothers play during an educational 'Building Brains' session in Van Chan District, Vietnam

Around a third of under-5s in Vietnam don't get the nutritious food they need. As a result, they grow up stunted. Our nutrition programme aims to improve the diets of under-2s and women, especially in rural areas with high ethnic minority populations.

Working with the government, we've brought nutrition advice services to a quarter of Vietnam's provinces. We're promoting breastfeeding, and training health workers to spread information about good nutrition.

Through our food security and livelihoods work, we're helping ensure the most vulnerable families get nutritious food. This includes helping the poorest families to rear livestock and grow their own vegetables.

Learning for all

For children from ethnic minority groups in Vietnam, it can be hard to access quality education. School enrolment levels are lower among these children. When they do get into school, many struggle to understand Vietnamese, which is not spoken at home.

We're pioneering a new bilingual education programme for ethnic minority children. This involves recruiting local language teaching assistants, and training education officials, teachers and managers to develop learning strategies for children from minority ethnic groups.

Huy Phong, one, with his mother Thi Lieu, 32, at a kindergarten running a Save the Children educational programme

Huy Phong, one, with his mother Thi Lieu, 32, at a kindergarten running a Save the Children educational programme

A stronger health system

The Vietnamese govenment has made significant progress in healthcare improvement. But it can still be hard for mums and babies to access high quality care, especially in rural areas.

We're improving hospital care by helping doctors and nurses keep their learning up-to-date, supplying medical equipment and setting up newborn care centres. At a local level, we're training midwives and community health workers to ensure mothers in the poorest communities have access to medical care.

Keeping children safe

Our local approach to child protection encourages children to monitor and report issues within their community. By running clubs where children can learn about their rights, we empower them to speak out about domestic violence, sexual exploitation, abuse and dangerous work. We also directly support children who've been affected by these issues.

Many children in Vietnam work in the textile industry, often working up to 17 hours a day for little pay. As well as supporting working children in Ho Chi Minh city, we're training local authorities across the country to monitor the textile industry and push for alternatives to child labour.

Read about more of our work in Vietnam

Page updated November 2021

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