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Falling between the cracks: How poverty and migration are resulting in inadequate care for children living in Viet Nam’s Mekong Delta - Full Report

Research reports

Written by Nicola Jones

​While increased migration, almost all internal, has been a primary driver of Viet Nam’s ‘economic miracle’, and has been linked on both a global and a national level, largely through the impacts of remittances on poverty, to a variety of positive outcomes for children, it is also clear that, in some contexts, migration may aggravate children’s vulnerability. In Viet Nam, there are concerns that it precludes education for children migrating with their parents and traps independently migrating children in poorly paid and often dangerous jobs, as well as leaving them living in sub-standard housing with inadequate physical and emotional care.

Given the diversity of children’s migration experiences, even within Viet Nam, and the frequency with which they migrate, a wider lens is required in order to better understand – and design policy and programming to address – the patterning of care and protection vulnerabilities that face children situated at the nexus of economic disadvantage and migration.

This study is part of a two-year Oak Foundation-funded programme of work that explores the potential for greater linkages between child protection and anti-poverty work in low- and middle-income countries. It is informed by a systematic review of the literature on four key dimensions of child protection – sexual violence and exploitation, physical violence, early marriage and inadequate care – and their linkages to poverty. The report is concerned primarily with inadequate care for children and focuses on the impacts of migration on children in Da Phuoc and Vinh Nguon communes, which are located on the Cambodian border in An Giang province in southern Viet Nam.

Nicola Jones, Elizabeth Presler-Marshall, Dang Bich Thuy