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Promoting equality and integration of vulnerable groups in Viet Nam
06 December 2007

Hanoi, Vietnam: Hanoi, Vietnam: UNV Vietnam joined hands with the National Coordinating Council on Disability of Vietnam, national and international volunteer based organizations, high-ranking government officials, the media and more than thousand volunteers and visitors to commemorate three international UN days: World AIDS day (1 December), International Day for Disabled People (3 December) and International Volunteer Day (5 December); with theme "Equality and Integration".

For the first event, Ms. Bui My Hanh, National UNV volunteer of GIPA project delivered a clear message to the audience. Many of the people living with HIV are contributing to the reversal the spread of HIV.

To support the message, volunteers organized a quiz at UNV’s stall, aiming to improve public’s knowledge on HIV and how to protect themselves against HIV. Games pertaining to sexual education, were conducted by volunteers with many young participants. There was also an exhibit of products done by self-help groups of people living with HIV that drew attention and impression many visitors. Most of the products were actually sold during the event.

UN resident coordinator, Mr. John Hendra thanked the volunteers, many of them people with disabilities and HIV, on behalf of the UN for their contributions in assisting Vietnam in reaching the Millennium Development Goals.

With the aim of promoting volunteerism for development, a quiz on MDGs were organised. The TV series on MDGs in Vietnam was also screened. Brochures on UNV operation in Vietnam and especially handouts on “How to become a volunteer for UNV” were shared interested visitors. A small survey on volunteerism amongst young people was organised and 153 results were received by the end of the day. All the volunteers from the different organisations celebrated participated in a “tug of war” and songs  

The volunteers worked very hard to support the event. Bonds were forged between volunteers of different organizations that participated. This gave them a sense of the strength and power volunteer have to assist in the social development of Vietnam. Many people with disabilities and people living with HIV said that they were made to feel included while joining in the activities.