The Finnish Embassy in Ha Noi has earmarked 160,600 euros (US$230,000) to help non-governmental organisations based in the south tackle climate-change challenges in the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta region.
It signed an agreement in HCM City yesterday, Aug 4, with the Centre for Cooperation Human Resource Development (C&D), a Vietnamese NGO, that has drawn up a two-year programme to strengthen southern NGOs.
The programme will enable them to support local communities in the provinces of Ben Tre and Tra Vinh to respond to climate change challenges and pursue inclusive and sustainable development initiatives.
“Building capacity for Vietnamese civil society organisations and assisting localities, including the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta which is identified as one of the regions most affected, in adapting to climate change are our focus,” Pekka Hyvunen, the Finnish ambassador, said. He identified the two provinces as the most vulnerable to climate change.
The project would not only provide southern NGOs opportunities to strengthen their institutional capacity and participate in a network that raises common voices, but also enable them to work with communities vulnerable to climate change, he added.
Phan Van Ngoc, executive director of the Centre for Community Capacity Building on Environmental Protection, said: “Roles of local government agencies and civil society organisations are essential as they are most directly aware of and involved in day-to-day issues at the local level.
“We should strengthen civil society organisations as there is very little pro-active engagement of civil society organisations in climate change adaptation in the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta.”