Small-scale coffee farmer gets helping hand
Lò Thị Phong from Chiềng Chung Commune in Mai Sơn District in the mountain province of Sơn La, has cultivated coffee for more than 10 years on 5,000 square metres of land, but she still finds life difficult.
A decade seems long enough to improve farmining practices by trial-and-error, however, according to the middle-aged Thái woman, “even now, we still cannot keep proper financial accounts”.
During discussions hosted by CARE International last week, stakeholders in the mountain coffee industry touched on deeper obstacles facing the industry.
CARE has worked in Việt Nam since 1989, concentrating on supporting rights and sustainable development among vulnerable groups, particularly remote ethnic communities, poor women and girls and people vulnerable to climate change.
Nguyễn Vĩnh Đức, deputy director of the Sơn La branch of the Minh Tiến Coffee Export Joint Stock Company, spoke on the drawbacks of small production in the development of local coffee.
“Since coffee plantations in Sơn La are limited, farmers have not established co-operatives like those in the Central Highlands provinces of Đắk Lắk and Lâm Đồng,” he said.
“Moreover, different techniques used by farmers to process their own beans leads to variation in quality, making it challenging for export companies,” he said.
Đức said that specialisation during production stages was critical to enhance the quality and increase the value of local coffee.
Phong is a typical coffee farmer in Sơn La Province. According to Lò Minh Hùng, deputy head of the provincial People’s Committee, there are about 12,000 ha of coffee belonging to about 400 households in the locality, small compared to the more than 180,000ha in Đắk Lắk Province.
At present, the province is known for its hydro-electricity industry and has the largest power generating dam in the nation. But when all hydro-electric projects have been completed, authorities have marked agriculture, particularly fruit and coffee, as the key industry.
The establishment of Sơn La Tea and Coffee company in 1987 introduced Arabica to the province. This is a strain of coffee more popular in the werst than Robusta, the well known Vietnamese coffee. With more than 30 years of experiences and the advantage of good soil, farmers produce the special beans popular in Germany, Japan and the United Staes.
Sơn La authorities aim to raise the coffee-growing area to 14,000 ha by 2020. However, current practices have led to soil degration and a lowering of bean quality.
Moreover, most ethnic farmers in the province are household units, not collectives. This leads to poor bargaining and limited access to inputs such as fertiliser, seeds and information on improving profits.
Therefore, local authorities aim to develop a sustainable coffee-growing area by tightening the links among farmers, processers and traders.
Hùng said coffee farmers should form co-operatives to gain better technology transfer and an exchange of experiences.
Đức said that farmers should accelerate good agricultural pratices, tighten farm management and protect the evnronment to accquire international certifications of sustainable farming including UTZ and 4C. “They are a strong foundation for Sơn La coffee to enhance its quality and access international markets,” he said..
“As a trader, our company creates more favourable conditions for households planting UTZ or 4C certified coffee products. Also, we call for the participation of banks in offering preferential loans and keeping farmers informed about market price,” Đức added.
In the past 10 years, Phong and her husband, like several other coffee-growing households in Sơn La Province, have struggled to find markets for their coffee so that they can expand the farming area.
Now, CARE International in co-operation with the Sơn La and Điện Biên departments of Agriculture and Rural Development, is implementing a project to support ethnic women in the coffee value chain. It is referred to as Technologically Enhanced Agricultural Livelihoods, or TEAL.
With about US$3 million (VNĐ53 billion) funded by the Australian Government, it is expected to promote the potential of coffee products in Mường Ẳng District of Điện Biên Province and Mai Sơn District of Sơn La Province over the next three years.
“Sơn La Province has identified Arabica coffee as one of the core commodities to reduce and eradicate poverty and to lift living standards. The project supports farmers growing coffee sustainably and plays an important role in improving their lives,” said Hùng.
At the same time, the role of women in making economic decision is expected to improve under the CARE programme .
By making ethnic women the main stakeholders, CARE is helping support village savings and loan associations. Simultaneously, a common platform for farmers, traders, consumers and relevant parties will be created to increase productivity and output and to attract further investment in the local coffee industry.
Empowering women and improving coffee value are the two core factors under TEAL, an ambitious project to promote agricultural products.
“With our experiences in promoting gender equality via agricultural value chains, we believe in the project’s ability to improve the living standards of ethnic households,” said Lê Kim Dung, country director of CARE International in Việt Nam.
HCM City ensures traffic safety for Tết
Mien Dong Coach Station, HCMC
The HCM City Traffic Safety Committee has deployed various measures to ensure traffic safety and order in the city before and during the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday.
Nguyễn Ngọc Tường, deputy chief of the committee, said, “The campaign aims to reduce traffic congestion and accidents to ensure that the city’s residents have a happy and peaceful holiday.”
The committee has worked with the Road – Railway Traffic Police Division (PC67) to enhance inspection at hot spots for traffic accidents and congestion.
The traffic police force is on duty 24/7 before and during the holiday to ensure smooth traffic and punish any violating vehicles at the city’s gateways and crowded places, such as railway stations, piers, coach stations and bus stations.
The inspection focuses on inter-provincial coach stations in HCM City, including Miền Đông (Eastern) Coach Station, Miền Tây (Western) Coach Station, An Sương Coach Station, Chợ Lớn Coach Station, District 8’s Coach Station and Ngã Tư Ga Coach Station to prevent the selling of black market fares and unlicensed coaches.
Unsafe vehicles, drivers using alcohol and drivers who do not have driving licenses or authentic certificates will be strictly punished.
The police have enhanced inspection at road-rail intersections to reduce railway accidents.
The committee has also cooperated with the Waterway Police Division (PC68) to manage violations on major waterway routes, such as Sài Gòn, Đồng Nai and Cần Giuộc Rivers and Tàu Hủ – Bến Nghé Canal.
The police will strictly punish vehicles with overloaded cargos as well as overloaded river buses and ferries to ensure safety for passengers.
HCM City continues Belt Road 3
HCM City will use a US$278 million loan from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for the fourth phase of Belt Road 3 project extending from National Highway No.22 to Bến Lức District in Long An Province.
Belt Road 3 will be 28.9km long and is expected to be complete in 2020, according to Diệp Bảo Tuấn, deputy director of the transport ministry’s Cửu Long Corporation for Investment, Development and Project Management of Infrastructure.
ADB has funded a total of 47km for the project from Bình Dương Province’s Thuận An District to National Highway No 22 in HCM City’s Hóc Môn District, as well as from National Highway No 22 to Bến Lức District in Long An Province.
The Belt Road 3 project, which received approval from the Prime Minister, has a total length of 89.3 km and runs through HCM City and the provinces of Đồng Nai, Bình Dương and Long An.
The project has six lanes with 80-100km/h speed will be used for commuting and two lanes will be used for emergency stops.
The road, which will connect highways and national roads, is expected to reduce congestion in the inner city and boost inter-provincial transport services.
The project has total investment of VNĐ55.81 trillion (US$2.45 billion) sourced from the State budget, Official Development Assistance and the private sector.
‘Colours of Japan’ celebrate ties with small screen tour
Việt Nam National Television (VTV) will air a documentary series entitled Colours of Japan on January 19, kicking off a range of activities to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the establishment of ties between Việt Nam and Japan.
The series, now in its third season, is co-produced by VTV and Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS). The episodes aim to enable Vietnamese viewers to get a television tour of Japan.
The series presenter is Lê Anh. Anh, a lecturer at Hà Nội National University’s Tourism Department and popular MC, will help audiences discover and explore the five prefectures of Chiba, Shizuoka, Oita, Nagasaki and Yamanashi.
“I have studied Japan for a long time,” said Anh, who has visited Japan ten times. “Luckily, I was invited to appear in the series’ season three. I hope my understanding of Japan will help convey interesting messages to audiences”.
In the first and the second seasons, the series presenters were television MC Hồng Phúc and Danh Tùng, who had never been to Japan. This time the series producers wanted to have a presenter with extensive experience in Japan, like Lê Anh.
Anh will follow a Vietnamese expatriate student to visit the most beautiful natural landscapes and man-made wonders at each Japanese prefecture, such as Mount Fuji in Yamanashi and Shizuoka; the green tea fields in Shizuoka, which account for 40 per cent of Japanese tea production; and the night landscapes and Huis Ten Bosch theme park in Nagasaki. The park features many Dutch-style buildings reflecting historical relations between Japan and the Netherlands.
The series crew this season includes more Vietnamese members who understand how to make the show more appealing to Vietnamese audiences.
“The first and the second seasons were produced by a Japanese crew and so the show is through Japanese eyes,” said producer Mishiro Shinichi. “This season is made with Vietnamese participation in shooting, editing and directing”.
During a month of shooting in Japan, the producers faced the country’s coldest autumn in 60 years and an ill-timed storm in Chiba and Oita prefectures.
The six 30-minute episodes will be aired on VTV’s Channel 3 (VTV3) on Friday afternoons at 4:20pm beginning on January 19.
Colours of Japan is part of a project between VTV and TBS to enhance co-operation between the two television networks. The previous co-operation projects such as dramas Người Cộng Sự (The Partner) in 2013 and Khúc Hát Mặt Trời (The Sun’s Song) are popular with Vietnamese audiences.
World of Youth drama troupe offers new show for Tết
Young artists of the Thế Giới Trẻ (World of Youth) Drama Troupe will offer three new comedies to serve theatregoers during the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday.
The shows will mark the troupe’s eighth anniversary this year.
The featured play is Bao Giờ Mẹ Lấy Chồng (When Does Mom Get Married?), a production by young director Ngọc Hùng, with actors Diễm Phương, Anh Tú and Quang Tuấn, graduates of the HCM City University of Theatre and Cinematography.
Director Hùng uses both Eastern and Western styles to feature the play’s theme about urban women and social problems.
“I wanted to direct plays on a stage filled with light and sound and visual effects,” he said.
Hùng, a reporter, theatre writer and director, knows how to dazzle the audience during and after performances.
“A stage is a channel for dreams. A director should be a mason building his own house,” he said before the premiere of Bao Giờ Mẹ Lấy Chồng yesterday.
“I dreamed of owning a theatre even as a student at university,” he said, referring to his migration to the stage in 2009 when he and his partner, a businessman, formed the troupe.
Hùng has written and directed more than 20 plays on different topics.
Most of his works, which are stories about urban youth, have helped young actors like Thu Trang, Hoàng Phi and Tiến Luật become popular among theatre lovers.
One of his highlighted plays, Chuyện Tình Bangkok (Love Story in Bangkok), has been performed 200 times since its initial show in 2014.
Though the play was about a well-worn topic, love, it brought new messages and included new concepts for the theatre.
Thanks to his contribution, Thế Giới Trẻ Troupe is one of the city’s leading private drama troupes, and is also a place for young actors to improve their skills.
The theatre has offered quality plays and has been able to earn a profit.
“Thế Giới Trẻ Troupe offers quality shows at only VNĐ30-50,000 (US$0.7) per ticket to attract young audiences. I believe in their future,” said Trần Thùy Giao, a fan of Hùng.
Giao and her friends say they enjoy serious plays about conflicts in life and love such as Dream Boys and Trai Yêu (Men in Love).
The comedy Bao Giờ Mẹ Lấy Chồng and other new plays will be staged every Saturday and Sunday in January and February at 125 Cống Quỳnh Street in District 1.
The troupe will offer free performances for the poor in rural districts during the Tết holiday, which begins on February 14.
Huế told to boost tourism in 2018
PM Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has urged the central province of Thừa Thiên–Huế to promote its cultural and historical heritage in the tourism sector, according to a report on the government website chinhphu.vn.
The central city, home to the Nguyễn Dynasty between 1802 and 1945, was called by PM Phúc the “Kyoto of Việt Nam,” characterised by its former Huế Imperial Citadel and royal tombs of Nguyễn Dynasty emperors.
Tourism development in Huế is endowed with a long-established historical and cultural traditions and is in close proximity to many world cultural heritage sites such as Hội An Town, Mỹ Sơn Sanctuary, Sơn Đoòng and Phong Nha caves.
Last year, the province welcomed around 3.8 million visitors, a rise of 16 per cent over the previous year, including 1.5 million foreigners, a 42 per cent year-on-year surge. Tourism revenue hit VNĐ3.52 trillion (US$155 million), up 10 per cent against 2016, according to figures released by the provincial tourism department.
The province has targeted wooing up to 4.2 million tourists this year, with foreign arrivals making up 40-45 per cent, and earning VNĐ4.2 to 4.3 trillion in tourism revenue.
After a night of “spiritual debauchery,” HCM City resident named Huy drove home, very much under the influence.
The bike weaved and swayed off the road into a section of the Rạch Chiếc River in District 9. Huy knew how to swim, so he made his way back to the river bank. A dip in the cold waters had cleared his befuddled brain enough to realise he was in no shape to retrieve his motorbike, so he left it there, on the river bank, staggered home on his feet, and slept like a baby.
The next day, he woke up to find that he was dead.
A report in the local newspaper said dozens of divers were searching for “the body of a man that fell into the Rạch Chiếc River last night”.
His motorbike had been found by residents living near the river and reported to the authorities, and the understandable assumption was made that the owner had drowned.
Huy rushed to the district police station to clarify the situation.
We are not sure if he was booked after the fact for drunk driving, but can be fairly certain that the next time he decides to drown his sorrows in a pint or two, he will not end up presumed drowned or worse.
A flighty airline
Last Friday, at 9pm, a sad Vân Anh and her husband boarded a flight in HCM City to Vinh City to attend her grandmother’s cremation. The family would meet at midnight, and take the body to the crematorium.
An hour and a half later, when they landed, their grief turned to shock as they found out they were in Hà Nội, not Vinh.
Airline staff, who’d not informed the passengers about the detour, said it was necessitated by bad weather in Vinh City. The staff also offered to give the couple VNĐ200,000 (US$8.8) each to get to Vinh from Hà Nội by bus.
Since the possibility of the bus covering 280km in 1.5 hours was remote, Vân Anh declined the generous offer.
She said the question of her ever taking that airline again was not up in the air, it was never going to happen.
Getting high and staying there
Parasailing has become a popular activity at beach destinations in Việt Nam, with more and more people wanting to experience the thrill of flying above the vast ocean and enjoying a bird’s-eye view of the world below.
Recently, two Chinese visitors to Nha Trang City enjoyed the flying part, but not the bird’s-eye view. An inexperienced motorboat driver left them hanging on top of a tree.
Parasailing accidents are not uncommon, locals say. They have been several incidents of people offering their mobile phones to the sea after forgetting to empty their pockets earlier. The Chinese visitors, meanwhile, are not likely to open their pockets again for the parasailing experience.
Tết tour programmes launched
Saigontourist Travel Service Co has arranged several tour programmes ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, or Tết, for domestic travellers, especially overseas Vietnamese hoping to recall their memories of the countryside.
The one-to-two day tours are available from the 11th to the 27th of the 12th lunar month, offering those who want to visit places in the southern region to get a feel of the busy atmosphere before Tết.
Tourists who cannot join a long trip can take a one-day tour of popular destinations in HCM City such as Bình Đông Wharf, Phú Mỹ Hưng Urban Area, 3D Artinus Museum, the Reunification Palace and the 68-storey Bitexco Financial Tower at a price of VNĐ779,000 (US$34.5) per customer, with departure on February 8, 10 and 12.
A one-day tour to Mỹ Tho City is priced at VNĐ979,000 with departure on February 7 and 12, while a one-day tour to Cái Bè-Vinh Long in the Mekong Delta costs VNĐ1.179 million, with departure on February 9 and 11.
Vietnam named in top 15 most Instagrammed global cruise destinations
Taking a cruise is an extravagant experience that most people want to make their friends jealous about, and trip to Vietnam is no exception, according to a survey by SeaHub.
The cruise travel site studied nearly 1.8 million Instagram posts tagged on various ships and ports around the world and came up with a list of the 25 top destinations, which treats cities and countries as equals and thus includes London and Hawaii as well as Canada, Japan and Russia.
Vietnam made the top 15 with Instagram mentions ranging between 20,001 and 40,000, while the world famous Halong Bay earned between 400 and 10,000.
SeaHub did not specify the time frame it used to survey the photo sharing network, but mentioned sources dated from late 2015.
Vietnam has one of the fastest growing tourism markets in the world, drawing nearly 13 million foreign visitors in 2017, up almost 30% from the previous year.
The country’s long coastline and beautiful beaches are certainly some of the main attractions.
Last year, top US lifestyle magazine Food and Wine named a cruise in Vietnam one of the 11 best trips across the globe for retirees.
It suggested either a river tour in Hanoi or Saigon, away from the hustle and bustle of the cities, or a boat tour through Ha Long Bay, a world natural heritage site with magnificent limestone rock formations rising from the sea.
Ha Long has always been one of Vietnam’s biggest tourism magnets. The bay has been hailed by the US travel guide site Smarter Travel as one of the best ecological spots in the world, while Business Insider said that an overnight Ha Long cruise trip is a “must-try” travel experience in Asia.
It was used to film the Hollywood blockbuster “Kong: Skull Island” which hit theaters last March, and has been raved about by many travel bloggers, including Australian Phoebe Lee who took global viewers through the Vietnamese capital Hanoi in two CNN commercials last year.
Lonely Planet suggested the best time to take a trip to Ha Long Bay is in October.
According to SeaHub, the most popular time for a cruise appears to be in July and August.
The Bahamas, Florida and the Caribbean topped the list by winning up to 100,000 mentions each, while Australia, California, Croatia, Greece and Mexico were also very popular.
US to support Vietnam in weather forecast
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in collaboration with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration of the United States of America (NASA) will carry out a cooperation project with Vietnam in weather forecast.
Accordingly, the project will help the Vietnamese staffs in effective usage of satellite imageries and field files to issue exactly weather news and forecasting.
In addition, it will support the forecast experts to make use of software into reservoir monitoring, flooding localization and harvest planning.
Earlier, NASA launched the Joint Polar Satellite System-1 (JPSS-1)
JPSS- 1 is expected to improve activities and raise capacity about weather forecast within framework of forest fires and flash floods consecutively happened in many countries all over the world.
Sa Dec village to give two million flower pots in Tet holidays
On the occasion of Tet holidays (the Lunar New Year), Sa Dec flower village in the Mekong delta province of Dong Thap, one of the largest flower villages in the delta, will supply two million flower pots of various kinds to the market.
Many farmers in the village said they have grown new varieties of flowers and ornamental trees thanks to good weather. However, price will go up slightly due to hike of fertilizer.
At present, 2,300 households in Tan Quy Dong and Tan Khanh Dong communes in Sa Dec Town grow flowers in over 510 hectare land.
This year, in addition to traditional flowers for Tet holidays, farmers also grow new varieties of roses, forget-me-not, lilies, new orchids and zinnias in high demand supplied by the local hi-technology application center.
Man awarded certificate of merit for saving people
The People’s Committee in the central province of Ha Tinh yesterday said that a man in the province was awarded a certificate of merit signed by Vietnamese Prime Minister for brave deed.
Duong Hai Cuong in Thach Quy Commune in Ha Tinh Town was awarded the certificate of merit for plunging into the water and rescued a drown woman in Phu Bridge.
Before, in November 25, 2017, while on his business across the bridge, Mr. Cuong discovered a woman jumping into river, he stopped and shouted loudly for help and then plunged into the riverto save her.
Ten minutes later, he and some locals took the women to safe shelter.
Hipper Lona Enro banned in Vietnam
In its document to its sub-departments across the country, the Department of Animal Health asked to recall Hipper Lona Enro-S20%, a veterinary pharmaceutical product, said a leader of the department of animal health in the central province of Ha Tinh yesterday.
Before, in December 27, 2017, Ha Tinh environment police unit in coordination with the local department of animal health and local police officer raided a shop to sell food for fish at Xom Moi village in Thach Binh Commune owned by Tran Thi Hong who is working for the local Department of Fishery.
Police officers detected 207 phials of veterinary pharmaceutical product Hipper Lona Enro-S20% which contain banned antibiotic Enrofloxacin.
Right after, the Ha Tinh Department of Animal Health sent its document to its higher department asking for the penalties.
In reply, the Department sent its document back saying that Hipper Lona Enro-S20% has not been allowed to circulate in Vietnam.
Moreover, the Department asked its sub-department in Ha Tinh to remove the product out of shop shelves. Plus, the local department of animal health must warn breeders not to use banned products.
One more clinic provides family doctor
Medical center in Ho Chi Minh City’s Go Vap District yesterday opened a clinic at 131 Nguyen Thai Son Street to provide family doctor and manage patients having sexually transmitted diseases and people affected by Noncommunicable diseases.
The clinic has 12 wards including emergency, surgery, internal medicine, Maternity and Gynaecology, pediatric, eye, ear-nose-throat, Odonto-Stomatology and Maxillo Facial Surgery, skin and venereal diseases, oriental medicine- physical therapy, testing and scan. The clinic is allowed to carry out 847 medical techniques.
Especially, the clinic admits insured patients to help people have more options in selecting nearby clinic and help increase the number of health insurance buyers.
Director of Medical center Dr. Nguyen Trung Hoa said that initially, the clinic received and provide emergency treatment to 50 people and 70 locals registered in the clinic. Moreover, it has provided paid immunization for 50 people a day.
‘Tu Hao Con Rong Chau Tien’ competition attracts thousands participants
Some 350,000 primary students took part in the competition ‘Tu Hao Con Rong Chau Tien’ (Pride of the feet of Vietnamese Descendants of a Dragon and a Fairy).
The Tre Film Studio and producer co-organized a festival and a competition after the presentation of the cartoon ‘Con Rong Chau Tien’ (Vietnamese Descendants of a Dragon and a Fairy) in November, 2017 which received positive feedback from the public.
The festival and the competition was organized in 110 schools in 12 cities and provinces across the country with 350,000 participants.
The organizer decided to give prizes to three teams with largest entries each VND5 million.
Additionally, one first prize is worth VND7 million, two second prizes, three third prizes and five encouragement prizes for each categories.
The organizer said that entries are written carefully with overwhelming emotion helping children love Vietnamese cultural values.
So far, the film has attracted eight million viewers in YouTube and become a “hot “ phenomenon of Vietnamese cartoon in the year.
Việt Nam female team beat Hoàng Văn Thụ
The Việt Nam national female football team defeated Hoàng Văn Thụ club of Thái Nguyên 6-1 at a friendly match on January 14.
The match was held at the Hà Nội-based Việt Nam Youth Football Training Centre.
Although Hoàng Văn Thụ are an amateur team, they have good physical strength and played powerfully. However, Việt Nam still dominated the match and scored two goals thanks to midfielder Nguyễn Thị Tuyết Dung, who was named in the list of 100 Women 2017 of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), and striker Phạm Hải Yến.
After the break, coach Mai Đức Chung gave several young aces a chance to hone their skills in the game and Việt Nam scored four more goals to fix the match of 6-1.
On January 17, Việt Nam will leave for China to compete in the international four-a-side friendly competition in Guangzhou, China, from January 19 to 23.
They will play against Colombia, Thailand and the hosts. They will then play two matches against two teams from Japan. In late March, they will travel to Germany for several weeks, where they will compete with Bayern Munich on March 26 and Hoffenheim three days later.
These activities aim to prepare the Việt Nam team for the 2018 AFC Women’s Asian Cup to be held in Jordan in April.
Experts share experience at first colorectal cancer symposium
Health experts will talk about advanced techniques and share their experience in colorectal cancer diagnosis and treatment at an international symposium beginning today.
The symposium is being held at Saint Paul General Hospital’s Hà Nội High Tech and Digestive Centre.
“Colorectal cancer is a popular cancer that is usually detected in people aged 40 and above. At the moment, the rate of colorectal cancer is on the rise, with a trend of younger patients,” said Saint Paul Hospital director Prof. Nguyễn Đình Hưng.
“However, there are currently many medical methods and advanced technologies that have gained good results in detecting and treating colorectal cancer. Early diagnosis and treatment can save a patient’s life as well as reduce treatment time and expense,” he said.
The centre was the first of its kind in Hà Nội to implement early cancer-screening measures for more than 100,000 people last year, Hưng said. According to him, some 5-6 per cent of them who test positive for cancer will be put into the cancer treatment programme at the hospital.
Health experts from France, Japan, Taipei (China) and Singapore will give presentations at the two-day event as well as train Vietnamese doctors for latest methods and techniques for colorectal cancer diagnosis and treatment.
“A symposium like this is a good opportunity for local doctors to share experience and transfer medical advances from international experts. With advanced techniques and existing modern medical facilities, local doctors can detect and successfully treat many digestive cancers, so that patients can be treated for cancer in Việt Nam with acceptable expenses instead of going abroad for expensive treatment,” said Prof. Trần Bình Giang, director of Việt Đức Hospital.
According to GLOBOCAN, a project of the International Agency for Research on Cancer that provides annual national-level estimates of cancer for 184 countries, Việt Nam reports more than 126,000 new cancer cases and some 94,000 cancer deaths every year. Most patients visit hospitals for cancer examination and treatment when they have already reached an advanced stage, which is both late and costly in terms of treatment.
VYSA connects Vietnamese nationals in Japan together
The Vietnamese Youths and Students’ Association (VYSA) in Japan debuted the executive board for the 2018-2019 tenure and reviewed its 2017 activities during a ceremony on January 14.
More than 10 VYSA chapters reported their activities in 2017, saying that VYSA has become a prestigious organisation connecting Vietnamese youths and students in Japan together, contributing to popularising Vietnam, its culture, cuisine and people and fostering people-to-people exchange between the two countries.
VYSA also linked up the Vietnamese people in Japan in the fields of science, arts, and sports via scientific seminars, photo and sports competitions. It provided support for Vietnamese students and youths living in need such as offering scholarships for first-year students, vocational orientations, or holding job fairs.
VYSA Chairwoman for the 2018-2019 tenure Pham Thanh Huong said the association will create a foundation for Vietnamese nationals in Japan to share information in the near future.
She expressed her wish that VYSA chapters will foster solidarity via joint activities.
The association has also received assistance from Vietnamese and Japanese firms, including Vietnam’s FPT in Japan.
“Red Sunday” responded in various localities
Nearly 700 blood units were donated by over 1,500 volunteers during the eighth “Red Sunday” 2018 on January 14 at Hong Duc University in the central province of Thanh Hoa.
The same day, in Vinh city of neighbouring Nghe An province, the event was held with the engagement of more than 1,000 officials and youth union members. Nearly 1,000 blood units are expected to be collected during the day.
Lat year, youngsters of Nghe An organised more than 60 voluntary blood donation events for 29,510 blood units.
One day earlier, hundreds of youth union members and young people in the southern province of Dong Nai also responded to the event and donated more than 360 blood units. This was the second time the “Red Sunday” had been held in the province.
Also on January 13, the “Red Sunday” attracted 500 students in the northern province of Yen Bai. The organsing board gathered more than 160 blood units, which was transported to the National Institute for Hematology and Blood Transfusion in Hanoi for the needy.
After nine years from 2008-2017, the “Red Sunday” collected more than 70,000 blood units. In 2017 alone, the event was responded by thousands of people from 25 localities nationwide with nearly 32,000 blood units.
In 2018, 33 localities have registered to organise the “Red Sunday” with an estimated 35,000 blood units.
Programme to provide Tet support for poor workers
The Vietnam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL) on January 13 launched a SMS programme to support poor workers during the upcoming Lunar New Year (Tet) festival.
Addressing the launching ceremony of the “Reunion Tet for workers” programme, VGCL President Bui Van Cuong called for the response of trade unions and organisations, thus ensuring all needy workers can enjoy a warm Tet holiday.
Donors can text “TSV” and send to 1407 to donate 20,000 VND to the programme.
After the ceremony, a number of organisations registered to support the programme. Notably, Mobifone company promised to donate 2.6 billion VND, the VNPOST will support 500 million VND, and the Trade Union of the Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group 300 million VND.
The organising board revealed that 6 billion VND in cash and gifts has been gathered by the programme so far.
Vietnamese students in Cambodia celebrate traditional New Year
Vietnamese students in Cambodia on January 13 organised an event to celebrate the 2018 Lunar New Year.
The event was attended by Vietnamese Ambassador to Cambodia Vu Quang Minh and Cambodian Minister of Education, Youth and Sports Hang Chuon Naron, along with overseas students from Vietnam and other countries like Laos, China, the Republic of Korea and Japan.
In his remarks, Minh said that Vietnamese students graduated in Cambodia have greatly contributed to Vietnam’s development as well as the friendship and cooperation between the two nations.
Lauding the contributions and academic achievements of Vietnamese students in the country, the Cambodian minister voiced his belief that the exchanged students will not only foster the development of the respective countries but also consolidate the bilateral traditional friendship and comprehensive cooperation.
Vietnamese students have spared no efforts to promote solidarity and maintain the cultural identity and tradition of their home country, said Le Trung Kien, head of the Vietnamese students in Cambodia.
Currently, more than 100 Vietnamese students are studying at universities in Cambodia.