A new irrigation system in northern Vietnam is allowing families to grow two crops per year rather than one, ensuring that they can provide sufficient food for their children. Previously, crops could not be watered during the dry season, so for much of the year, food supplies were scarce, contributing to high rates of malnutrition in young children.
In addition to constructing 3,500 metres of canals, ChildFund has worked with government agriculture experts to teach close to 900 people about modern farming techniques. Rice and maize yields have increased by 40% and 50%, respectively.
This means that farmers can provide more food for their children or sell some of their harvest to pay for medical care, education supplies or basic household items.
Twenty year old Tam is one of the many young farmers who have tried the new farming techniques on their family’s land. She tells us about her experience:
“There are six people in my family. Our life is still very hard as we only have enough food to eat and must afford my siblings to go to schools. I decided to join ChildFund’s agriculture model to learn new things.
This year, the project came to teach us how to grow rice. It was pretty hard for me at the beginning as I was not familiar with the techniques and had limited knowledge. For example, in the past, farmers like me did not know to transplant rice seedlings into rows. Everyone used the local rice variety, which had low productivity.
The results so far are quite positive... although the harvest has not been finished yet, I expect rice production will double. Garden chickens have helped increase my family income and our life is improving.
I hope from such activities families will have a better economic condition - every family with the ability to give their children better education and children in my village will no longer suffer from malnutrition.”
If you would like to learn more about ChildFund's work in Vietnam, please visit the Vietnam country page. To help improve the lives of families living in northern Vietnam, sponsor a Vietnamese child today.