Global Reach: Vietnam

Book Fold
Year Work
Total Funds
Invested To Date

EMpower in VIETNAM

Our work in Vietnam is focused in four geographic areas: Hanoi, Hoi An, Hue and the Mekong Delta. We support grantee partner programs that work against youth trafficking, on adolescent sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and decent employment for at-risk youth.

Issues affecting Youth

The Vietnamese population is young with a median age of 30.3 years. Vietnam has made huge progress in reducing poverty, but disparities have widened in the last 20 years between urban and rural areas, the rich and the poor, and ethnic minorities and the majority of the population.

Challenges in Education: Vietnam has made impressive progress toward ensuring all children have access to quality education. Yet disparities remain. Ethnic minority populations struggle with mandatory instruction in Vietnamese leading to lower enrollment ratios and education attainment. Quality of education is another concern.

Trafficking: Vietnam is a major source country for men, women, and children subjected to sex trafficking and forced labor within the country and abroad. The nature and scale of trafficking is serious, well-organized and transnational. Victims are usually recruited by someone known to them and often lured with the promise of work or vocational training.

Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) Issues: The Adolescent Birth ratio among young women 15-19 has been steadily going up in the last 30 years and is higher than in many Asian countries, which is attributable to early marriage, premarital sex and a shortage of reproductive healthcare services. This situation results in low use of contraceptives among young people and very high abortion rates. Additionally, Vietnam is experiencing growing HIV/AIDS cases among youth under the age of 30.

Difficult Youth transition to decent employment: Youth unemployment rates in Vietnam are low (2.8%). What is very worrisome are the very high rates of young people working in informal (76%) and vulnerable employment (40%). Similar to other countries, certain youth groups are experiencing difficult transitions to the labor market (e.g. young women, ethnic minorities). Effective employment services are seldom, access to career and vocational counselling for youth have to be improved, as access to decent jobs.

Our Approach to tackling the Issues

  • Support of anti-trafficking programs along the continuum, from prevention and awareness-raising activities for different stakeholders, to protection and services for survivors of trafficking, and assistance in the identification and rescue of trafficked youth, and investigation of trafficking cases as well as ensuring their criminal prosecution.
  • Support of programs to ensure the provision of correct SRH information to young people, and (youth-friendly) services as well as access to contraception and information on HIV/AIDS, including information on gender issues.
  • Support of livelihoods and vocational training programs that link Vietnamese youth to decent employment, and those that actively integrate the needs of young women and ethnic minorities.

Other countries in Asia:

Our Underwriters pay for all of our administrative and fundraising costs, so 100% of your donation goes directly to empowering at-risk youth.