Half of farmers in the Mekong Delta Region of Vietnam live on less than $1 a day. The families in this area struggle with limited land for production, illiteracy, unemployment and lack of clean water and sanitation. As a result, the child malnutrition rate is very high – causing stunted growth and a wide range of diseases.
The main reasons for malnutrition are poor access to resources and lack of awareness about nutrient dense food crops and how to best use available food crops. As malnutrition is intricately linked with poverty and cognitive development of children, decreasing childhood malnutrition in poor farmers’ households is an urgent aspect in the poverty-ending mission of Heifer’s work.
Through a special Heifer International matching project, we hope to help more than 4,300 households in the poorest parts of the Mekong Delta region gain self-reliance by providing them with a cow, small animals and extensive training so they can maximize their income from their small farms.