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COVID-19 aid packages provided to over 9,100 UXO survivors in Vietnam's two central provinces

06:00 | 28/05/2020

Leaders of the Vietnam National Mine Action Centre (VNMAC), UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) on May 25-26 visited the central province of Quang Binh and participated in a number of activities under the Korea-Vietnam Mine Action project.

covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces NPA expands survey and clear UXO in Quang Binh
covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces NPA continues support to UXO clearance and capacity development in Quang Tri
covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces NPA/RENEW back to survey and clearance work as social distancing eased
covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces
Aid packages of basic commodities were handed over to help thousands of UXO survivors in two Vietnamese provinces. 

Findings from a recent rapid assessment show that food, masks, and hand sanitizer are the top three needs of unexploded ordnance (UXO) survivors in COVID-19 response. As an immediate response to the needs, Caitlin Wiesen, Resident Representative of UNDP and Han Deog Cho, Country Director of KOICA on May 26 presented packages of food, masks and hand sanitizers for distribution to more than 9,100 UXO survivors and their families in Quang Binh and Binh Dinh provinces.

"A lot of people were seriously affected by the COVID-19 epidemic. In the fight against epidemic, solidarity among nations is very important," KOICA Country Director Han Deog Cho said at the handover ceremony. "The essentials which the Korea-Vietnam Mine Action project presented to UXO survivors reflect the affection and solidarity of Korean people towards the Vietnamese people."

“We wanted to react quickly to meet some of these urgent needs and today’s event is our immediate response to the survey results presented ten days ago,” said UNDP Resident Representative in Vietnam Caitlin Wiesen. “I am therefore delighted to be here this afternoon together with the KOICA Country Director to present packages of food, masks and hand sanitizers for distribution to more than 9,100 UXO survivors and their families in Quang Binh and Binh Dinh provinces in response to COVID-19.’’

covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces
The delegation visits Tran Dinh Theu who has a prosthetic arm donated by the project.

Assistance to UXO victims and their families is an important component of the Korea-Vietnam Mine Action Project, which was jointly launched in early 2018 by VNMAC, KOICA and UNDP to accelerate mine action for safety and sustainable development. In collaboration with the Ministry of Labor, Invalid and Social Affairs (MOLISA), the project has developed an official database on 75,000 people with disabilities, 9,100 of them are UXO survivors. The database includes need assessment of UXO survivors, thus enabling the project to provide them relevant and targeted support.

The Korea-Vietnam Mine Action Project also helps strengthen the governance and management of national mine action activities and reduce future accidents through increasing the awareness in local communities about the potential risk from explosive remnants of war (ERW).

The clean-up of wartime debris will likely continue for years. However, children and adults can be safe if they are educated about UXO risks and provided with guidance on what to do when they encounter ERW around their homes and gardens, roadsides and school yards.

The project has so far surveyed nearly 17,000 hectares of land and cleared over 4,000 hectares of contaminated areas in Quang Binh and Binh Dinh, providing more land for development in these provinces.

More than 150,000 local students and people educated about how to remain safe in the mine-affected environment.

covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces
Students of Van Trach primary school perform to raise awareness on mine risk.

The delegation also visited Van Trach primary school (Bo Trach district, Quang Binh province) and watched students perform to raise awareness on mine risk.

Cho Han Deog, KOICA Country Director in Vietnam, and Caitlin Wiesen, UNDP Resident Representative held quiz on explosive ordnance risk and how to protect themselves with students of Van Trach primary school.

covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces
Students are eager to answer questions on key steps to protect themselves from mine risk.
covid 19 aid packages provided to over 9100 uxo survivors in vietnams two central provinces

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