US Extends Program to Support People with Disabilities in Vietnam
|At the Inclusion project mid-year review 2022 in Hoi An City, Quang Nam province. Source: USAID Vietnam|
The United States Mission to Vietnam, through the US Agency for International Development (USAID), and Government of Vietnam partners, including the National Action Center for Chemical and Environmental Treatment (NACCET), launched the second phase of USAID’s flagship disabilities project, INCLUSION, in Binh Dinh and Kon Tum provinces.
This phase will run through the project’s end in 2026 and provide targeted assistance to persons with severe disabilities, according to a recent press release from the US embassy in Vietnam.
Begun in 2021, USAID’s USD 65 million INCLUSION project partners with the Vietnamese government, local organizations, and the private sector to strengthen the country’s rehabilitation system and community support networks to ensure that all persons with disabilities have the opportunity to fully participate in society while improving their overall quality of life.
The project provides direct assistance to persons with severe disabilities, improves and expands rehabilitation and social services, and enhances policy implementation. To sustain progress, the project also builds the service provider capacity of national and local government disabilities agencies as well as community disabilities organizations.
In addition to Binh Dinh and Kon Tum, the project works in six other provinces heavily sprayed with Agent Orange during the American War in Vietnam including Quang Tri, Thua Thien Hue, Quang Nam, Dong Nai, Binh Phuoc, and Tay Ninh.
Over its five-year run, the project is expected to support a total of 60,000 persons with disabilities with rehabilitation, care, psychological support, assistive devices, and/or livelihood assistance.
For over 30 years, the US and Vietnam have partnered to improve the lives of approximately one million persons with disabilities. USAID has contributed more than USD 140 million toward these efforts to date.
Vietnam is USAID’s largest and longest-running disability program in the world, dating back to the creation of the Leahy War Victims Fund in 1989.
During 10 years until 1971, the US army dropped about 80 million liters of herbicide, of which AO made up 61 percent and contained roughly 366kg of dioxin which is among the most potent toxins known to mankind.
According to documents unveiled by the US Department of Defence, over 434,000 gallons of AO containing about 11kg of dioxin were sprayed in the A Luoi area of the central province of Thua Thien-Hue between 1965 and 1970.
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