How UNICEF works for children in Viet Nam 2017-2021

Learn how we are supporting children in Viet Nam since 1975

UNICEF programme 2017-2021
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Widening inequalities

Despite Viet Nam’s rapid progress towards economic prosperity and human development, disparities for children are still driven by ethnicity, gender, place of origin, and disability. 

Since the mid-1980s and the Doi Moi reforms, Viet Nam’s economic growth has propelled the country to lower middle-income status by increasing revenues and halving poverty. However, the dynamic economy can hide a widening gap for the country’s 26 million children with serious effects on children’s nutrition, health, education and protection. More children are vulnerable and face difficulties in accessing services and support. This situation prevents those disadvantaged children from living their lives to the full and contributing to Viet Nam’s future.

As Viet Nam maintains its socio-economic development, the government requires policies that are relevant to the needs of children and the implementation of those policies needs to be more effective to address inequities affecting children and laws that fully comply with child rights standards. Integrated services reaching the most vulnerable children also need to be of better quality and making use of innovation. Strategic partnerships can also boost achievements for a more inclusive society and sustain the economic prosperity of the past three decades. 

Turning a vision into action

UNICEF develops a common action with the government of Viet Nam to reduce disparities and bring about an inclusive, non-discriminatory and caring society that protects the rights of all children, including the most marginalized and vulnerable ones. UNICEF speaks out for the rights of every child everywhere in the country, in communities with local leaders and in the capital city when the government decides on new laws and national policies, and approves budgets.

To achieve these goals, UNICEF uses evidence and good practices to advance policies promoting child rights. It also supports 
Viet Nam to invest more in children and families by designing social services with high impact for children. UNICEF advocates to have child related government agencies adequately financed and staffed with trained personnel with good technical skills. UNICEF also works with other stakeholders, such as civil society and businesses, to support child well-being through child-friendly policies and action and to promote the Child Rights and Business Principles (CRBP).

In all its work, UNICEF emphasises the following:

1. Evidence based advocacy and global best practices

Improving the quality of data on children and how it is used is a priority for UNICEF in Viet Nam. UNICEF uses knowledge and information to influence decision making and offers technical advice to the government to improve legislation as well as plans and budgets focusing on children.

2. Capacity development and innovation

A core part of UNICEF’s work is to help enhance the skills, knowledge and competencies of government departments to plan, deliver, monitor and evaluate quality programmes and services for children. UNICEF recognises the value of innovation, to employ new technologies  and to pursue proven approaches to advance children’s rights. 

3. Strengthening partnerships

UNICEF encourages the government to collaborate with civil society organisations and businesses, building on each other’s strengths to help respect, protect and provide for children.

4. Integrated delivery

Traditionally, different departments deliver different child services. However, a child’s needs are inter-connected in terms of health, education, nutrition or protection. UNICEF therefore promotes an integrated approach to service delivery encouraging everyone to work better together in the interest of children.  

UNICEF Country Programme 2017-2021
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