Today in Hanoi I am pleased to announce two initiatives to support the empowerment of women in Vietnam.
Australia will provide a total of $4.2 million for two projects to be delivered in partnership with the Vietnam Women’s Union, the country’s peak organisation for advancing the rights of women and girls.
$2.1 million will be provided for a new agricultural research partnership project to be delivered through the Australian Centre for Agricultural Research (ACIAR). This project will deliver real improvements to women’s lives, lifting household incomes by linking farmers and traders with more lucrative markets in urban centres.
Women in Vietnam play a crucial role in farming. ACIAR’s partnership will see Australian and Vietnamese researchers collaborating to improve the profitability and sustainability of smallholder vegetable farmers in the highlands of north western Vietnam. More than 2,000 women from ethnic minority and poor, smallholder farming families will benefit in Lao Cai province alone, allowing them to increase vegetable production by around $3.4 million annually.
Domestic violence also remains a serious issue in Vietnam. Gender-based violence prevents women from reaching their personal and economic potential. The Australian Government will provide $2.1 million for combating gender-based violence under the Australia’s Government Partnerships for Development program (GPFD), which provides grants to link Australian and international public sector organisations.
South Australia’s Flinders University will partner with the Vietnam Women’s Union to strengthen services for women and children experiencing violence, including through refuges and counselling.
These projects underline the vital link between women’s participation in a country’s economic life and the country’s overall social and economic development.
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