Various activities held to observe World Population Day

Tuesday, 2016-07-05 21:43:18
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Deputy head of the General Office for Population and Family Planning Dr Le Canh Nhac speaks at the press conference held in Hanoi on July 5 announcing activities to mark the 2016 World Population Day in Vietnam. (Credit: NDO)
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NDO – A range of activities will be held nationwide to mark the 2016 World Population Day (July 11) targeting adolescent girls, heard a press conference in Hanoi on July 5.

Co-organised by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the General Office for Population and Family Planning (GOPFP) under the Ministry of Health, the day focuses on one of the important population issues – investing in teenage girls, which is also this year's theme.

The event calls on attention and strategic investment on adolescent girls, as well as strengthening commitments to ensuring their rights. It aims to create favourable conditions for them to access knowledge on gender and reproductive health to reduce unwanted pregnancies, in addition to offering them detail knowledge about sexuality and delaying marriage.

It also targets providing them access to equal education and stable jobs to promote their full potentials, and help them and their families move out of poverty and improve their position in society.

Speaking at the conference, deputy head of the GOPFP Le Canh Nhac said that adolescent girls around the world currently face more difficulties and challenges than boys at the same ages. They have not fully enjoyed their right to education and healthcare, while having not much opportunity to fulfil their potentials.

Each year around the globe there are around 20 million girls aged 15-19 giving birth. An estimation of 3.2 million unsafe abortions in adolescent girls is also recorded. This is one of the major causes of death among girls from 15-19 years old. In addition, complications of abortions and unwanted births cause severe consequences to them, even threatening their lives.

It is not merely a health issue but also the root cause leading to poverty, gender inequality, violence, and illiteracy, requiring joint efforts from the whole community to address.

Nhac stressed the need to adjust and develop policies targeting adolescent girls, especially those in mountainous and disadvantaged areas, to create favourable conditions for them to grow-up with safe and healthiness, making sure that they have access to equal education and reproductive health services to look forward to a bright future.

Vietnam is in its ‘golden population structure’ with the workforce outnumbering dependents. The country has developed support policies to empower adolescent girls to have means and information to promote their potential and become positive factors that create a change in their families and communities.

In response to the World Population Day 2016, a range activities will be held, including a grant ceremony and parade held in Hanoi next Saturday, consulting activities providing integrated services on the issue, signing of co-operation programmes on population and family planning activities between the general office and relevant ministries and departments at central level, and prenuptial and reproductive health counselling at local level.