The role of Non-governmental organizations in socio-economic development

Wednesday - 14/07/2021 10:10
The role of Non-governmental organizations in socio-economic development
People of social protection taking photo with volunteers of Activity International (AI)
People of social protection taking photo with volunteers of Activity International (AI)
The attraction of foreign investment capital sources, especially development cooperation programs and projects from Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) has important and necessary meanings in socio-economic development, hunger eradication, and poverty reduction in Hau Giang province.
 Activity International (AI) is a Dutch NGO, operating in Vietnam since 2014 in the field of providing international volunteers to support social facilities and difficult schools. Activity International (AI)/ Netherlands has been operating in Hau Giang province since April 2019. So far, the Organization has been improving the spiritual life of 50 disadvantaged children living and studying at Hoa Mai’s Children's Home in Vi Thanh, people with disabilities, mild psychiatric patients, and the homeless who are being raised at the Social Work Center of Hau Giang Province.
After more than 02 years of implementation, the project has a total campaign funding of nearly VND 200 million. It is expected that the operating funding in 2021 is more than VND 1 billion. The beneficiaries of the project like wearing a new shirt when there are still difficulties in facilities, living conditions, and access to entertainment services. Especially, disadvantaged people have the opportunity to communicate with international volunteers and orphans, odd-point schools are given lots of additional English learning skills, life skills, sports guided by the volunteers themselves. At the same time, AI has mobilized funding sources to purchase mattresses, mats, and physical therapy tools, rehabilitation, renovation of some rooms, and sanitation works. In March 2020, the project "Building a physical therapy and rehabilitation area" was officially put into use including physical therapy, rehabilitation, and playground. With a construction cost of VND 600 million to meet the needs of treatment and comprehensive care of many residents at the Hau Giang’s Social Support Centre.
Mr. Le Van Cao – Director of Hau Giang Social Work Center said:
"In 2018, the permission to receive Activity International (Dutch AI) to sponsor, has brought 30 international volunteers to share work with officials, workers of the Center, provide daily physiotherapy and occupational therapy for patients, and sponsor equipment and living items. Every year, about 20-30 patients are recovering from illnesses, re-integrating into the community, and coming back with their families. It can be said that the work and support of Activity International (Dutch AI) in recent years for the Center, talking about material things is not how much but the silent work of the volunteers, meaningful humanities can not be exchanged for money. To contribute to sharing difficulties for officials, workers as well as patients at the Center in the past time".
Full of enthusiasm, inspiration and warm-hearted contribution are volunteers who have brought an enormous benefit for many people from the project. Some volunteers like Ms. Leslie Palmer, a retired Canadian teacher, volunteer once to twice a year. The image of an English teacher has become familiar with Hoa Mai Children's Home and activities at the Social Work Center.
According to Mr. Dang Van Quoc Viet, Director of AI Program in Vietnam, "AI focuses on providing volunteers, supporting disadvantaged people, guiding occupational skills for disadvantaged people, and supporting English teaching for children. Activity International aims to help the poor, the disabled, the lonely elderly, the orphans... and many other special cases to implement many practical support activities, helping the under-motivated in society to be more inspired to rise in life. In addition, AI will continue to implement the project in Hau Giang province in the next years and introduce more foreign NGOs coming to operate in Hau Giang province".
Centre for Community Health Research and Support (CCHS) has been receiving funding of more than 41.5 billion VND to implement the project in Chau Thanh A and Long My district, Hau Giang province. The direct beneficiaries of the project are women, children, and members of poor and near-poor households.
 After more than 10 years of implementation, the project "Primary health care and capacity building to improve living conditions for women" and "Enhancing health care capacity for women and children" by CCHS sponsor with the mobilized capital of nearly 20 billion VND, the project has brought practical effects to the community and local officials. It is estimated that more than 100 provincial, district and commune officials have improved their capacity to implement programs of activities to support livelihoods and take care of community health. In particular, there are more than 10,000 households receiving health care and economic development. In addition, the project benefited more than 8,000 women receiving medical treatment and 200 children receiving nutritional support interventions.
 The project has also supported poor households to build 1,200 toilets, install 500 drilled wells, apply 500 models of household waste classification for composting and build 300 biogas systems to treat livestock waste, raising pigs, and at the same time providing gas for a living. The women's groups established by the project are still self-sustaining and supporting each other to escape poverty and have a well-off economic life.
Nutition workshop by Centre for Community Healthy Research and Support for women in Vinh Vien commune, Long My district
After the success of the project brought to the locality, CCHS continues to implement the project "Primary health education and climate change adaptation in hamlets" phase 1 (2017 - 2020) in Long My district, Hau Giang province. The project has shaped livelihood models suitable for poor households and adapting to the impacts of climate change in the locality. 12 livelihood groups and 2 cooperatives were established to promote poor women in the community to cooperate in economic development effectively. The project has helped reduce the rate of women suffering from gynecological diseases in the community from 67.2% down to 26.1%.
As a direct beneficiary of the project, Ms. Ngoc Manh - Director of Xeo Gia Cooperative, Long My district confided "I have joined the project for 3 years, thanks to the project, we have a supported livelihood and improved better family life. The members of the cooperative are also more excited because they are supported with revolving capital to increase their income and have stable jobs.”
 Due to the increasingly complex impacts of climate change and environmental sanitation problems remain while community development groups in hamlets, livelihood groups, and cooperatives have just been established, management skills are not sustainable. CCHS has decided to continue implementing project phase 2 (2020 -2023) with a budget of more than 15 billion VND. In addition to the goal of livelihood development and health care for poor households, in this period, the project has a new goal of improving the capacity of the health sector and community to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic. Besides, CCHS is also calling for potential donors to implement 02 projects "Clean energy for the environment and health" and "Enhancing economic resilience for female garment workers affected by Covid-19”.
 Continuing to promote the achieved results in 2021, Hau Giang province will continue to well implement programs and projects that have been implemented in the area by commitments with NGOs. At the same time, keep maintaining good relationships with international organizations in Vietnam, encourage NGOs to continue aid cooperation, contributing to the province's socio-economic development.

Author: Le An

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