Habitat for Humanity Vietnam and its local partner have completed an eight-month project to improve the housing and sanitation facilities of vulnerable communities in Dong Thap province. Nearly 4,000 individuals were served with funding support from SC Johnson.
Located in Mekong Delta, nearly one in four people in Dong Thap still live below the poverty line despite having fertile land for agriculture. The province is also exposed to disasters such as severe flooding, saline intrusion, and storm surges. It is anticipated that 45% of the land in Dong Thap will be impacted by saltwater intrusion leading to crop damage and making it impossible for low-income households to make ends meet, let alone save for health and housing needs. The ongoing pandemic is exacerbating the existing gaps in the development of vulnerable communities.
In partnership with Thap Muoi District Women Union, Habitat Vietnam worked with 35 families to improve their homes and the access to adequate household latrines. The training on WASH and distribution of hygiene kits were also facilitated in the community. Through the project, over 1,200 preventive kits, including hygiene kits and personal protection equipment kits (PPE), have been distributed to front-line medical workers, school children and households.
In addition, two primary schools in Thanh Loi commune have significantly improved their sanitary and hygienic conditions, bringing a clean and healthy environment for 230 students through three newly-built and renovated school latrines with accessible design for people with disabilities. Both schools also have new handwashing facilities that help promote healthy hygienic habits for students to prevent the spread of diseases.
President of Thap Muoi District Women’s Union, Tran Thi Ngoc Cam, shared, “Our province has been greatly impacted by the recent pandemic outbreak with overloaded capacity in the quarantine area. Thanks to the timely provision of PPE and hygiene kits, medical staff and people are better prepared in the fight against the pandemic.” Tran added that with the project’s support on enhancing sanitation and living conditions of the people in Thap Muoi district, the community was able to achieve the national target program on building a new countryside in 2021. She added that it would be hard to complete the national target due to their limited resources, and was grateful to Habitat Vietnam and SC Johnson for their contribution to the community.
“Amid the pandemic, one of the most important ways to prevent the spread of disease is frequent handwashing with soap and water. But for vulnerable households in Dong Thap province, Vietnam, decent homes with adequate hygiene facilities for proper handwashing remain out of reach,” said Bells Regino-Borja, National Director of Habitat for Humanity Vietnam. “We are pleased to partner with SC Johnson through a project that improves health, safety and wellbeing of vulnerable households and community through adequate housing and sanitation and the provision of preventive kits. The partnership is committed to helping families, health workers, students and teachers gain protection against the virus and contribute to building back better.”