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How do child clubs benefit children in Vietnam?

Every Thursday afternoon 14-year-old Hang and her friends attend to the local Child Club in their village in Bac Kan province. There they enjoy singing lessons, play sports and can exchange their knowledge. Hang and her friends Child Club is one of 104 clubs that ChildFund Vietnam has set up to support children in Bac Kan province.

Hang is always eager to come to her Child Club in Ha Vi commune which is only 200m from her home. She has been participating in Child Club for the past three years. Through the Child Club, Hang has attended many training courses such as injury prevention, child protection and child rights.

“Children have the right to play, to go to school and to be protected,” she says proudly. “I was so attracted by the contests organised by ChildFund, especially the competition on child protection law. Thanks to the competition, I had many chances to meet new friends, get more knowledge and develop my presentation skills.”

Hang’s younger sister, nine-year-old Hue also often comes to Child Club to play chess, which is one of her favourite activities at the club. Hue is a chess champion at district level and she hopes to go on to play in the provincial championship.

While Hue loves playing chess, 11-year-old Vi likes badminton most: “Going to the Child Club, we have chances to play sports like badminton. It’s amazing to be able to play sports with my friends.”

Children enjoying themselves at their local Child Club.

For children in mountainous Ha Vi commune, it is difficult to access recreational activities. However, since ChildFund helped establish Child Clubs in villages and provided sport equipment, comics, newspapers for youth and other facilities, children have had improved equipment to entertain themselves after school.

Mr. Luc Van Bot, Head of Hang`s village, often spends three hours a week at the local Children Club in his village. “10 years ago life in my village was so hard, especially for children. Injuries and accidents often occurred, namely drowning, burning, animal bites in the village and led to many unfortunate consequences. Also, the parents were unaware of the potential risks to their children as well as basic child rights. The voice of children was not valued,” he says.

“Through various types of communications sessions conducted by ChildFund, parents’ understanding has changed and children have become more confident and active in their daily lives.”

Child Clubs are providing new opportunities for children like Hang, Hue and Vi and many others to achieve their dreams. Being members of the club means children are also learning about their rights and how to protect themselves against risks in their lives.

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