Why Children?

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Why did we choose to focus on children? Because of numbers.

  • Viet Nam’s population is young with 14.3 per cent of the total male and 13.4 per cent of the total female population under 16 years of age (GSO (2008) Population change and Family Planning Survey)
  • In 2006, about one third of all children below 16 years of age, or seven million children, can be considered poor.
  • One third of children below five are stunted as a result of chronic malnutrition.
  • More than one out of every three children is not fully immunized by the age of five.
  • Almost half of all children do not have access to a hygienic sanitation facility in their home and two thirds of all children do not have a children’s or picture book to read.
  • 2008 figures show about 20 per cent of children are considered underweight and malnourished (NIN (2009) Statistical Data on the Nutrition Situation of Children over the Years)
  • In Viet Nam, every year approximately 1,100 children under five die of diarrhea linked to poor water, sanitation and hygiene.
  • 1.2 million children in Vietnam are living with disabilities
  • Migration flows within Viet Nam are dominated by young people aged 15-24 years old. Young migrants tend to migrate to mainly urban areas.
  • The average age of victims of child sexual abuse is 12 years old.
  • Between 2003 – 2008 it was estimated that 14% of sex workers were under 18 years old
  • Between 9-24% of children believed to be engaged in some form of child labor
  • 12% of children do not have their births registered
  • 8% of all children aged 0-15 live in a household in which the head caregiver is unable to work. This indicator of disparity is, contrary to most in Viet Nam, worse in urban areas and the report suggests this may be due to the old age and/or disability of many urban household heads.
  • In 2010 the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) reported that more than 4.3 million children were living in “special circumstances,” which is nearly 18 per cent of all Vietnamese boys and girls. It includes 1,353,458 children with disabilities, nearly300,000 children affected by HIV and AIDS with 5,704 children living with HIV, 126,248 abandoned children and orphans without care of their biological parents, 28,910 children working in hazardous conditions, more than 21,230 street children, 1,805 abused children and 21,500 children living in institutions.
  • According to the Ministry of Public Security, in 2011 there were 13,600 juveniles in conflict with the law.
  • There is a lack of a comprehensive data monitoring system and reliable data on many child protection issues, including data on child prostitution, child trafficking or maltreatment which are significant, without the exact number able to be determined.

Source: http://www.unicef.org/vietnam

Links to other sources of information about children’s issues in Vietnam:


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