Promoting Inclusive Development for Ethnic Minority Children and Youth in Lao Cai Province

Vietnam: Lau Thi Ngai & Lung Cai, Bac Ha district, Lao Cai province



    Difficulties of social integration of ethnic minority children due to language barrier, and difficult economic condition: Most of the dropout students’ families are involved in farming work with low income in remote rural areas. It is found that most of them are ethnic. Children have to work for their own survival and support to their families. School education is not considered important among the parents. Parents don’t care about their children’s study and stop them to go to school for taking care of their siblings or doing house chores, or even earning a living, especially for elder daughters.


    High prevalence of malnutrition, especially among minority children. By 2010, in Lao Cai Province, child malnutrition remained as high as 25.7% and 25% and 23%.


    Poor competence and quality of teachers. Child-friendly school is also an important issue. This is education sector responsibility to provide appropriate education programs to children in the areas, especially to those who are ethnic. Coordination is lacking between schools and community, including parents, social and government organisations in the effort to support the children to school.


    Parenting education is limited due to knowledge and skills gaps / inactive parent’s associations. Parents in the targeted area have limited formal education and ineffective guidance on how to raise their children in a manner that promotes their development. Field survey showed that parents had a very limited understanding of such issues as health, hygiene and nutrition (their diet usually consists of rice).


    Unemployment rate in Lao Cai is an alarming issue.  According to MOLISA, there are 2,660 unemployed people every year, mainly are ethnic minorities aged 16-25.


AEAI’s Response

Triple action process: School/family/community based on ECCE approach


Global Objective

To enable children and disadvantaged youths to get equal access to quality education and market oriented vocational training.


Main Activities

  – Improve learning environment through infrastructure renovation/equipment and extra-courses/activities to improve children learning abilities/performance


  – Improve nutritional status of children through enhancing knowledge/skill for parents, community members and local authorities on child care and education and improving families’ livelihood.


  – Enhance support to marginalised youth, including parents of pre and primary children in Lao Cai, through vocational training and job placement interventions.



Lao Cai Department of Education and Training, Lao Cai Department of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs, Communal authorities



Tu NGUYEN, Country Program Director


Location /
Duration / 2017-2019

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