Participants at the event. Photo by the New Zealand Embassy
The New Zealand Embassy and ActionAid Vietnam today launched a partnership to “Leave No One Behind in the Struggle Against COVID–19”. The project will assist female workers in informal sectors of the economy in Da Nang and Hue. Leaders of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DOFA) of Thua Thien Hue Province, the Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (DOLISA) of Da Nang City and the Centre for Community Development and Social Work – CODES participated the launch. The New Zealand Embassy will provide NZD 50,000 (approx. VND 790,000,000) to the project, which aims to reach more than 350 women workers in informal employment as street vendors, junk collectors, or housemaids, over the coming 3 months.
Underscoring the importance of this project in the larger programme of support by New Zealand to Vietnam, New Zealand Chargé d’Affaires Joseph Mayhew said, “This is a practical initiative to help ease the economic impacts of COVID-19 and strengthen the resilience of more than 350 women workers, and their families, in Da Nang and Hue’s informal sectors. I believe that supporting women workers in sectors that are hardest hit by the pandemic is a vital component of robust, inclusive, and equitable recovery.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted Vietnam’s tourism industry, with Da Nang and Thua Thien Hue, the two major international tourism hubs particularly affected. The project includes training on household economic literacy and management, women’s rights and child nutrition. The financial support can be used to purchase food, living essentials or small livelihood options.
According to ActionAid Vietnam’s recent research, more than 90% of tourism sector workers lost employment and income due to COVID. In Da Nang and Thua Thien Hue, almost 90,000 people either became unemployed or suffered from greatly reduced income. Only 22% of the (ActionAid’s) surveyed workers currently have access to the VND-62-trillion support package.
“This project is one way to help women workers become more visible in the public eye, and at the same time trying to set up a practical model where support can be delivered to the target groups and individuals in an efficient and transparent manner. We want to contribute to the commitments of Vietnam and New Zealand, of Leaving No One Behind in the struggles to overcome COVID-19.” said Ms. Hoang Phuong Thao, Country Director of ActionAid Vietnam.