'Leverage' contributes to changing ethnic minority areas in Soc Trang

The National Target Program 1719 has contributed to changing the appearance and improving the material and spiritual life of ethnic minorities in Soc Trang province.

Soc Trang has a large number of ethnic minorities living (accounting for 35.44% of the population). After more than 2 years of effectively implementing the National Target Program for Socio-Economic Development in Ethnic Minority and Mountainous Areas in the 2021-2030 period (phase 1 from 2021-2025), calling abbreviated as the National Target Program 1719 (the Program), the appearance of the province’s ethnic minority areas has changed and has seen many improvements.

Tuyến lộ nông thôn ấp Đai Úi, xã Phú Mỹ (huyện Mỹ Tú, tỉnh Sóc Trăng) được đầu tư xây dựng từ nguồn vốn Chương trình MTQG 1719, góp phần diện mạo nông thôn khởi sắc. (Ảnh: Phương Nhi)
The rural road in Dai Ui hamlet, Phu My commune (My Tu district, Soc Trang province) was invented and built from the National Target Program 1719. (Photo: Phuong Nghi)

Ethnic minority areas benefit from the National Target Program 1719

Tran De (Soc Trang province) has a large number of ethnic minorities (accounting for over 53% of the population) with 10 communes with ethnic minorities benefiting from the Program 1719, and is actively accelerating the implementation process.

Mr. Thach Van Men, Head of Ethnic Affairs Department of Tran De district, said that the Program contributes to helping poor and near-poor households in ethnic minority areas have stable, safe housing and the ability to withstand the impacts of natural disasters, contributing to improving quality of life and reducing poverty sustainably. Currently, Tran De district has more than 200 households benefiting from housing support capital from the Program in accordance with Resolution No.28 of the Government. By 2023, about 60 houses are expected to be completed.

According to Mr. Men, recently, the Department of Ethnic Minorities has coordinated with departments, sectors, and organizations of the district to appraise the list of beneficiary households and conduct field surveys to ensure that poor households receive timely support and to the right subjects. In the upcoming time, the Department will establish a delegation to inspect and supervise implementation by localities to ensure the implementation of the Program is increasingly effective, contributing to local socio-economic development.

As one of the households receiving housing support from the Program capital, in the newly built house, Mr. Ly Phonl, Dao Vien hamlet (Vien Binh commune, Tran De district) could not hide his joy. In early 2023, his family was considered by the Government to receive housing support in the amount of 40 million VND and was facilitated with a loan of 50 million VND from the district’s Bank for Social Policies Transaction Office to build a spacious house.

“Receiving the State’s attention and support to build a new house, my family and I are touched and grateful. Now, my family no longer has to worry about having to use buckets and basins to catch water in the house when it rains since the roof leaks in many places. Having a new house, now my wife and I work hard to take care of our lives”, Mr. Ly Phonl said.

Tuan Tuc (Thanh Tri district) is a commune with a large population of Khmer people (accounting for 70%). In recent times, the commune has paid attention to implementing policies to improve people’s lives such as supporting housing and land, changing occupations, borrowing capital for production development, safe use of electricity, clean and hygienic water. In particular, the Program has always been implemented by Executive Committees, authorities, fronts, and organizations in the commune.

As one of the households receiving capital support for career change and production development loans, Ms. Son Thi Huol (Trung Thong hamlet, Tuan Tuc commune) excitedly shared: “With a support of 10 million VND from the local government and a loan of 30 million VND from the district’s Bank for Social Policies Transaction Office, my family invested in building a barn and bought a pair of breeding cows to raise. The Party and State’s preferential and supportive policies for ethnic minorities make us feel excited. Now we focus on developing the herd of cows and working hard to make life more and more stable”.

Nowadays, Dai Ui, Phu My commune (My Tu district) is a hamlet where 100% Khmer people live. They are delighted because the hamlet’s rural road has just been completed.

Mr. Thach Siem shared that the old rural road is only about 2 meters wide and many sections are degraded, so people’s travel is challenging. Now, the State has invested in a new road, the hamlet’s people are extremely happy and voluntarily donated land, facilitating construction. Currently, the new road is wide enough for cars to access, so people’s travel is convenient ang transporting goods for production and getting children to school is also easier.

“The Program is the exact policy of the Party and State, showing concern for ethnic minorities. Through the Program’s implementation, the lives of the Khmer ethnic people here are increasingly improved”, Mr. Siem said.

Ông Lý Phonl (đứng giữa) ấp Đào Viên (xã Viên Bình, huyện Trần Đề) phấn khởi có căn nhà được hỗ trợ từ nguồn vốn Chương trình MTQG 1719. (Ảnh: Phương Nhi)
Mr. Ly Phonl (standing in the middle) is excited to have a house supported from the Program 1719. (Photo: Phuong Nghi)

Enhance the lives of ethnic minorities

The Program has been contributing to changing the face and improving the material and spiritual life of ethnic minorities in Soc Trang province.

According to Mr. Ly Rotha, Head of the Provincial Ethnic Committee, in 2023, the Program has a total implementation budget of over 413 billion VND. From the close attention, leadership, and direction of the Executive Committees, authorities at all levels, and the consensus and responsibility of the people, especially ethnic minorities, by the end of June 2023, the province had implemented capital disbursement in 2022 and 2023 of over 220 billion VND of capital to carry out projects and subprojects under the Program.

Since then, the province has invested in the construction of 48 rural traffic projects, 11 traffic bridges, 1 community house, 3 projects to upgrade the market network, and 4 centralized water projects. In the upcoming time, the Executive Committees and authorities at all levels will continue to effectively coordinate and implement the Program, contributing to helping ethnic minorities have working conditions, develop the family economy and stabilize their lives.

The timely implementation of the Program has created conditions to help ethnic minorities develop production, increase income, and escape poverty sustainably.

Ms. Huynh Thi Diem Ngoc, Vice Chairwoman of the People’s Committee of Soc Trang Province, said that up to now, the province has 99.1% of communes with car roads to the commune center; 100% of communes have primary and secondary schools, and medical stations, including 96% of communes have standard medical stations; 100% of hamlets and villages have national grid; 85.52% of communes and wards have cultural houses and 88.26% of hamlets have community houses.

“According to the results of reviewing poor households at the end of 2022, Soc Trang still has 15.139 multidimensional poor households (accounting for 4.54% of the total number of households, decreased 2.19% compared to 2021) consistent with multidimensional poverty index, including 7.122 poor Khmer households (accounting for 7.01 of the total number of households, decreased 3.01% compared to last year) and 345 poor Hoa households (accounting for 2.09%)”, Ms. Ngoc said.

The involvement of the entire political system and the efforts of ethnic minorities have contributed to effectively promote the Program.

The Program’s support policies were implemented promptly and to the right subjects, contributing to building more trust among ethnic minorities in the leadership of the Party and State, serving as a “leverage” to promote socio-economic development in ethnic minority areas.

Ethnic groups in Dak Lak to promote its role in building national unity
Ethnic minority women ‘keep the fire’ of national culture
Saudi Fund for Development’s contributions to transform challenges into opportunities in Vietnam and the world
More special mechanisms proposed to speed up national target programmes
Lam Dong Province: New Appearance, New Expectation
Translated by Phuong Linh