UNFPA’s engagement in Viet Nam dates back to 1977. Our current programme of work is embedded within two strategic frameworks – the UN’s One Plan for 2012-2016 and the joint UNDP, UNICEF and UNFPA 2012-2016 Common Country Programme Document . Both of these frameworks are also fully aligned with Viet Nam’s own development priorities.
We support three main areas of work: sexual and reproductive health, population and development, and gender issues. In the area of sexual and reproductive health , we focus on strengthening the health system in order to promote universal access to these services for vulnerable groups of young people, ethnic minorities, sex workers and victims of domestic violence. In the field of population and development , we focus on emerging issues such as ageing and the need for a comprehensive social protection system. In the area of gender , we support the development of effective ways to prevent gender-based violence and the current sex ratio at birth imbalance, whereby significantly more boys than girls are born.
Viet Nam has a strong legal framework in place in the areas of population, reproductive health and gender. However, there is often weak implementation of these laws and policies. Much of UNFPA’s work is therefore focused on supporting the Government to narrow the gap between policy and implementation by generating evidence on the issues, developing different cost-effective policy options, and making sure the evidence and options are discussed at the policy- and decision-making level, including how they can be rolled out on a large scale.
While the majority of our work is focused at the national policy level, we are also on the ground in five provinces. Our work here is particularly targeted at vulnerable groups such as ethnic minorities, poor households, migrants, sex workers and victims of domestic violence, as well as young people and adolescents. It is our ambition that the intervention models we are helping to develop in these five provinces, if cost-effective, will be considered by the Government for provincial and nation-wide scaling up.