CWS Asia


Children cleaning their hands at Khuon Pong kindergarten (Chiem Hoa – Tuyen Quang). Photo: CWS

A boy in Vietnam is happily receiving the chicken from LDS Giving Machine Project. Photo: CWS

In January 2020 Vietnam and Japan CWS Country Representatives, Ngo Quoc Dung and Takeshi Komino, were honored to meet in Da Nang, Vietnam to celebrate Japanese—Vietnamese development cooperation. Dignitaries present were the Prime Minister of Vietnam, the Japanese Ambassador to Vietnam and the Secretary General Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party. Parliamentarians from both countries were also present along with provincial representatives from across Vietnam. Luong Minh Chinh, who is the Deputy Director of the Tuyen Quang Provincial Department of Foreign Affairs was on hand to celebrate a newly agreed CWS Japan—Vietnam disaster risk reduction partnership project. He is front and center in the photo with Dung (far left) and Takeshi, who is holding the agreement document with him.

Overview |

Church World Service has been active in Vietnam, with some time away in the 1970s, since 1954. Now, programs focus on helping ethnic minority communities in the country’s northern provinces. A signature Newly Integrated Development and Essential Action program focuses on family and community water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), primarily. In partnership with Women’s and Youth Unions as well as local government leaders, we engage schools’ leaders and teachers, healthcare workers and others in addressing a variety of challenges that vulnerable ethnic minority families face. These span issues from promoting the rights of children and raising awareness trafficking risks … to taking action to clean up village environments and end single-use plastic overuse … to supporting families to use probiotics for animal waste management and biogas digesters to keep their homes clean and safe while generating biogas for cooking in the bargain.

Material and information-sharing support for schools and clinics is an important part of CWS work in Vietnam too. Key areas of action are child protection in several directions: physical safety and wellbeing in schools, dormitories and clinics. Our primary funding and programming partner is the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Recently, Week of Compassion has given strong support to expand WASH activities, which are vitally important in the face of COVID-19 risks. And, Latter-day Saints Charities have made it possible to help families improve their diets and incomes by raising poultry to use for family meals and for sale.

In a new direction, and in partnership with CWS Japan and Japanese technical partners, and with Japanese government funding, awareness raising and action to understand and reduce disaster risks has become key to CWS work in Vietnam.

Latest News

Kansas City Students Visit Vietnam to Learn and Serve

CWS Vietnam | March 7, 2019

In early January our CWS team in Vietnam hosted CWS Board of Directors member, Dr. Paul Chan, and 11 Kansas City Pembroke High School students and their teacher Mr. Samuel Knopik, for a service-learning opportunity of a lifetime. The trip succeeded beyond Paul’s and Sam’s wildest dreams for the students, who all agreed that the […]

Reflections on a trip to Vietnam

Paul Chan | January 25, 2019

Paul Chan is a member of the CWS board of Directors. He led a trip for high school students to visit CWS programs in Vietnam in January 2019. Below are some excerpts from the trip updates that he sent to the students’ parents. Tuesday, January 8 Today was a whirlwind tour. We started with a […]

A Daughter-Mother Duo Improve Their Hygiene, Health and Happiness

CWS Vietnam | January 20, 2019

Mai Hanh is a 5-year-old girl from the Tay ethnic minority group, and she lives in a poor rural village 220 kilometers (135 miles) northwest from Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi. When CWS staff met Hanh during a recent visit to her village pre-school, they learned that she had no idea what a toilet is because, where […]

CWS Honored by Vietnam Government for Humanitarian Response Supports

CWS Vietnam | January 19, 2019

On December 11, 2018 government and civil society organizations came together to discuss a call for joint efforts in supporting humanitarian activities in Vietnam. The Conference is an initiative of Vietnam Red Cross and was hosted by the organization in cooperation with the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Viet Nam Union of […]

“My decision to make biogas at home is completely right!”

Nguyen Van Ty - CWS Vietnam | December 27, 2018

Ma Van Va heads a young family from the Tay ethnic minority group in Nam Kep village, and they earn their living from rice farming and pig and cattle raising. So, they do have some resources to support themselves; but, honestly, Va needed some help to manage his animals better – especially their solid waste, […]

“I am happy to say that many people were inspired and motivated to have sanitary latrines.”

Tran Van Thang - CWS Vietnam | December 26, 2018

Recently, I had a chance to spend some time with Bong Thi Chieu, who is 38 and a member of the Thai ethnic minority group in northern Vietnam. She lives with her family in Na Dan 2 village, and we met during my monitoring visit to see how she and her neighbors are doing in […]

CWS Asia learning exchange: spotlight on Vietnam

Ek Sothea - CWS Cambodia | December 14, 2018

This blog is the third in a four-part series focusing on CWS water, sanitation and hygiene programs in each of four Asian countries where we work. This one focuses on Vietnam. It’s important to know that the acronym WASH stands for Water, Sanitation and Hygiene. CWS teams from across Asia gathered in Cambodia last week […]

Saving Time and the Enviroment with Improved Stoves

CWS Vietnam | November 28, 2018

By Pham Cong Tuan, CWS Project Officer. Hoang Thi Vien, 33, and Quan Thi Tham, 34, are the two women who cooking twice each school day for students of the Hoa Trung primary school, which is a boarding school for ethnic minority children who travel to a central village from their remote mountain villages if […]

Health Check-ups in Nam Mo Village Motivate a Mother’s Change

CWS Vietnam | October 23, 2018

By Tran Van Thang, CWS Project Officer. Giang Thi Dinh, 35, is the mother of two young children in Nam Mo village, which is quite difficult to reach even though it is just 25 km (≈15 miles) from the district town. This is because the dirt road that winds through the mountains to Nam Mo […]

Sharing Xuyen’s Happiness as My Own!

CWS Vietnam | October 22, 2018

By Pham Cong Tuan, CWS Project Officer. I met Mr. Xuyen while he was working in a rice field close to his house during my recent visit to Hung My commune. With a bright smile, Xuyen insisted that I drop by his home as he wanted to show me the biogas* tank that the family […]

Sanitary latrines, in return, facilitate community development!

CWS Vietnam | September 20, 2018

When I joined the celebration in Na Dan #1 village for their certification as a “Community with outstanding achievement in obtaining Open Defecation Free status”, I could see the happiness and excitement on the face of each person I met, especially Lo Van Nhoi, the young head of the village. Before the celebration day, Nhoi […]

CWS Bring Timely Help to Many Families in Vietnam

By Nguyen Thi Lan Anh, Vietnam Administrative and Program Support Officer | September 19, 2018

I met Chao Kien Hin, a 66-year-old man from the Dao ethnic group during a recent emergency relief materials distribution event and was pleased that he took some time to tell me about his son’s family, which was greatly affected in one of our recent severe rainstorms. Here is what Mr. Hin told me: while […]

Nothing Is Left. We Were Poor Already, and Now We Are Poor Again

CWS Vietnam | August 20, 2018

Coming to Lai Chau in mid-July about three weeks after flash floods and landslides there, CWS Emergency Response team members, despite their years of experience with helping poor people in their country, were surprised and moved to meet the families affected by a crushing natural disaster. The flash floods swept away almost all that families […]

One Child’s Effort to Raise Awareness About Child Marriage Inspires Us

By Tran Van Thang, CWS Project Officer | July 23, 2018

I had a chance recently to meet with a young girl student when I visited the Muong Kim junior secondary school #1, who surprised me during a school awareness-raising event where she used a picture to support her talk to other students. Showing a drawing, she explained, “My drawing show a young girl in her […]

Peer Support to Expand Child-friendly Libraries Motivates Teaches and Students!

by Nguyen Thi Hai Yen, CWS Program Officer | July 22, 2018

Duong Duc Trung is Head Teacher at Muong Kim #2 primary school in Than Uyen district, and he recently joined CWS-organized child-friendly school library training course I led. During one break time, he told me that during 10 years of teaching and leading schools, this is the first time he has worked in a school […]

Biosand water filtration, one step at a time

CWS Vietnam | June 21, 2018

By Nguyen Van Ty and Ngo Quoc Dung. Recently, I (Ty) had a chance to visit Truong Quoc Hoan and his family in Nha May village in Quan Chu commune in northern Vietnam. As his parents’ first son, Hoan, who is 47, his wife and their two children live with his parents in a traditional […]

School Awareness-raising Events Are Not Always for Children, But for Their Parents Too!

CWS Vietnam | June 20, 2018

By Nguyen Thi Hai Yen and Ngo Quoc Dung. “It was a great event that our school had. So many student parents, both dads or moms, joined,… and even some grandparents, too. The feedback from them is also good, and it shows an increasing interest of the community on the issues, I think.” Luong Thi […]

Everybody Poops. And Everybody Should Have a Dignified Place To Do It.

Ryan Shanley | June 19, 2018

Imagine I have a bottle of water. There’s a plastic seal on the cap. I unwrap the plastic seal, twist off the cap and take a sip. You wouldn’t see anything wrong with that, the bottle of water is clean. Now, imagine I take a piece of hair and place it in a piece of […]

Keeping Traditional Culture Alive in Hmong Schools in Vietnam

Ryan Shanley | June 15, 2018

On my third day with the Church World Service team in Vietnam, we traveled into the northern Vietnamese hills to visit two schools and learn about the progress of the newly developed children’s interest groups. We arrived at Ta Mung Ethnic Minority Boarding Primary School first and were greeted by the school’s deputy Headmaster, Ms. […]

Students Enrich and Enliven Their Library to Encourage More Reading

CWS Vietnam | May 18, 2018

By Tran Van Thang, CWS Project Officer. Hoang Thi Nu is a little girl of the Thai ethnic group living in Muong Kim commune, where CWS partners with schools to improve student learning environments, including the library and the reading activities it promotes. Nu is in Grade 5, which is the last grade of primary […]

Church World Service is a faith-based organization transforming communities around the globe through just and sustainable responses to hunger, poverty, displacement and disaster.

Church World Service, Inc., is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.

ACT Alliance InterAction ICVA BBB Accredited Charity Charity Navigator

Church World Service • 1.800.297.1516 • info@cwsglobal.orgPrivacy