New drowning prevention programme launched to help protect children
A life-saving new child drowning prevention programme was launched in Hanoi on June 26th, aiming to promote water safety in Vietnam through improved capacity of national implementers.
Children need to be taught life-saving skills to prevent drowning when summer comes.
The programme is carried out by the Vietnamese Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Global Health Advocacy Incubator (GHAI), with financial support from the charitable organisation, Bloomberg Philanthropies.
At the launch ceremony, Dr. Kelly Henning, Director of Public Health Programmes at Bloomberg Philanthropies, announced a commitment of USD 2.4 million for the first two years of the five-year project.
According to statistics, 2,000 children lose their lives in drowning accidents every year in Vietnam, making drowning the country’s leading cause of death among children under 15. The rate of child drowning in Vietnam is higher than in other Southeast Asian countries and ten times higher than that of developed countries.
The new programme aims to support local governments and communities in eight provinces of Lao Cai, Yen Bai, Ninh Binh, Quang Binh, Thanh Hoa, Dak Lak, Dong Thap and Soc Trang. It will implement measures to ensure effective child supervision for the prevention of drowning among children under five and provide survival swimming and water safety skills to children aged six to fifteen years old.
Dr. Kelly Henning, Director of Public Health Programmes at Bloomberg Philanthropies, announces a commitment of USD 2.4 million for the first two years of the five-year project at its launch on June 26th.
The scheme also aims to raise awareness of childhood drowning, risk factors and preventive measures, as well as strengthening the capacity of relevant agencies and implementers of the child drowning prevention programme in Vietnam.
MOLISA Deputy Minister Nguyen Thi Ha said that Vietnam has undertaken significant efforts to prevent child drowning, including adopting a strong legal framework. The Law on Children passed in 2016 set out the state’s responsibilities for implementing measures to prevent child injuries. The Prime Minister also approved Decision No.234/QĐ-TTg, outlining the national plan for the prevention of child injuries for the period of 2016-2020, targeting a reduction in the numbers of child drowning incidents.
Dr. Kelly Henning, Director of Public Health Programmes at Bloomberg Philanthropies, affirmed that the project brings two cost-effective, sustainable interventions—supervised day care and survival swimming lessons—to Vietnam, where they will help save the lives of thousands of children.
Drowning is preventable, said Dr. Kidong Park, WHO Representative in Vietnam. He added that a multi sector approach and the strong participation of communities involving the children and their parents and caretakers is needed./.