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Monday, January 24, 2022

Parenting project expanded to promote nurturing care for Vietnamese children

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has partnered with the Vietnamese Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) and businesses to expand the Integrated Early Childhood Development Holistic Parenting Project to promote nurturing care for Vietnamese children.

The partnership gathers forces from MOLISA, The Human Safety Net, a global foundation powered by Generali, and the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), allowing the holistic parenting project to be expanded to more provinces and cities.

According to UNICEF, there is a growing body of evidence in Vietnam on the importance of good parenting practices for children’s physical, cognitive, emotional, and psycho-social development.

Besides, as businesses across the country look for ways to attract workers back to their factories, there is clearly an important role for the business sector to advance supportive programs for their workers, provide parenting programs as well as ensure that they support early childhood development by upholding children’s rights through corporate family-friendly policies and programs.

“Being a parent is the most important job in the world. It’s also the toughest job and the most rewarding. Parenting is too important to be left to chance. Reliable information, skills and tools support parents and caregivers, to enjoy their role and give children a brilliant start in life to help them reach their full potential,” said Rana Flowers, UNICEF Representative to Vietnam.

“This partnership speaks volumes about the importance of mobilization of public and social resources and responsibilities to give the support needed to parents in Vietnam.”

In the scale-up period of 2021-2024, the project will rely on over 1 million euros from The Human Safety Net. In addition to that, the global foundation has already planned recurring non-financial support activities.

Since 2019, the project has been implemented in 27 communes of three provinces of Gia Lai, Dien Bien and Kon Tum and selected factories in and around HCMC by UNICEF, MOLISA and VCCI.

With a vision to 2024, the partners renewed their pledge to expand the project to 15 provinces and cities and 40 more companies with wider and mobile access via digital learning platforms.

As parents and caregivers are the main providers of care, nutrition, stimulation and protection that every child needs for their healthy development, the collaboration aims to build networks of support in the communities and factories for parents, providing them the knowledge and skills to offer nurturing care and build positive parent-child relationships.

This will also help reduce violence against children by learning through play, reinforcing positive and managing difficult behaviors, creating a structure and routine, talking about Covid-19, and managing stress and conflict.

At the same time, family-friendly policies, such as paid parental leave, breastfeeding support, childcare and child grants, giving parents the time and resources they need to build their babies’ brains, are also promoted as best practices.

“Promoting early childhood development and supporting Vietnamese families is key to Generali Vietnam’s community agenda. As a member of The Human Safety Net, we are pleased to be able to work alongside partners with great expertise such as UNICEF,” said Tina Nguyen, CEO of Generali Vietnam.

“This project will enable Generali Vietnam and UNICEF to leverage our core strengths, networks, resources and experience in integrated early childhood development to create synergies in extending the reach and impacts of our parenting programs,” she added.

“I am proud to see a major Italian company such as Generali standing close to children in Vietnam and contributing to the development of an inclusive and social sensitive corporate culture,” said Italian Ambassador to Vietnam Antonio Alessandro. “My congratulations to MOLISA, UNICEF and Generali for these achievements.”

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