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  Poverty Alleviation

Poor people receive help to stabilise their lives

More alsphalted roads have been built in rural areas

Five years ago, on October 17, 2000, the Vietnam Fatherland Front’s Central Committee decided to select October 17 as the "Day for the Poor". This significant campaign has proved effective as it mobilised the potential and combined strength of the whole society.

Tuyen Quang is a poor province in the northern mountainous region of the country, which is home to 22 different ethnic groups. During recent years, under the instruction and direction of authorities at all levels, and the provincial Fatherland Front’s Committee, local people have actively taken part in the Day for the Poor campaign. As a result, the province’s Fund for the Poor has raised more than VND23 billion. In August 2004, Tuyen Quang, together with the northern province of Hai Duong and the central province of Ha Tinh, was awarded the Certificate of Merit by the Vietnam Fatherland Front’s Central Committee in recognition of its achievements in repairing and building houses for the poor ahead of schedule. By last August, Tuyen Quang province had built 4,753 houses and repaired 1,724 others. 

In addition, there are six other provinces recognised as being successful in eliminating dilapidated houses for poor people, namely Hai Phong, Hung Yen, Bac Ninh, Hanoi, Nam Dinh and Tay Ninh. Each locality has built thousands of "houses of great unity" and upgraded thousands of others for the poor. In 2005, many other provinces fulfilled their targets to build charity houses and repair dilapidated houses for poor people.

The board of the Day for the Poor campaign at all levels has agreed to use the Fund for the Poor to build houses for poor families.

By August 30, 2005, the Day for the Poor campaign had mobilised nearly VND1,200 billion and helped build more than 310,000 houses for the poor nationwide. After building houses for the poor, the campaign also provided assistance to help them get involved in production activities, thus increasing their income and chances to escape poverty.

Each poor household often receives support of VND2-3 million. With the assistance of Party members and unions, many households can escape poverty and become rich. To escape poverty sustainably, almost all localities find the causes and devise proper solutions.

Good management and effective use of the Fund for the Poor has been highlighted over the past time. In a working session with the Chairman of Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee in 2001, Prime Minister Phan Van Khai said the Fund for Poor is a good initiative but there remains problem over controlling the collected money. Therefore, there should be a heavy punishment for those who take bribes. Thanks to tough measures towards corruption, the Fund for the Poor has received local and international support from people of all strata over the past five years. Many children contributed the whole of their "lucky money" to the fund. An elderly overseas Vietnamese Nguyen Van Luy saved his pensions of US$8,000 in two years and sent it to the fund.

Apart from the material significance, the Day for the Poor campaign has great spiritual significance, heightening the strength of solidarity among Vietnamese people.

International donors have acknowledged Vietnam’s achievements in poverty reduction and hunger eradication. However, the number of poor households accounts for a huge proportion of the total, especially in the rural and mountainous areas. In recent years, the Government has offered investment policies in ethnic minority areas, which help bridge the gap among regions to ensure equality and social justice. It is believed that internal strength will create a driving force to escape poverty, contributing to the development of the country.

VOV - (20/10/2005)


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