Ngày 28/8/2017, MCNV phối hợp với Sở Y tế Quảng Trị tổ chức Hội thảo “Tăng cường chăm sóc sức khỏe tâm thần tại cộng đồng” với sự tham gia của hơn 30 đại biểu của ngành y tế,  ngành Lao động thương binh xã hội tuyến tỉnh và 9 huyện/thị và 6 cán bộ y tế thôn xã của 2 xã Vĩnh Sơn và Vĩnh Tú huyện Vĩnh Linh.

Hội thảo được tổ chức nhằm mục đích: chia sẻ thông tin và kinh nghiệm của các mô hình chăm sóc sức khỏe tâm thần dựa vào cộng đồng trên địa bàn tỉnh Quảng Trị

Tạị hội thảo, các đại biểu tham dự đã chia sẻ thông tin và thảo luận về một số vấn đề quan trọng như: (i) Tình hình quản lý người bệnh tâm thần trên địa bàn tỉnh Quảng Trị; (ii) Các chính sách và chế độ hỗ trợ hỗ trợ cho bệnh nhân tâm thần trong thời gian qua; (iii) Hiệu quả và bài học kinh nghiệm từ mô hình chăm sóc sức khỏe tâm thần tại cộng đồng do MCNV hỗ trợ đã được triển khai tại 2 xã A Xing, Thanh huyện Hướng Hóa và 2 xã Vĩnh Sơn, Vĩnh Tú huyện Vĩnh Linh trong giai đoạn 2013-2016 (iv) Thảo luận về khả năng phối hợp giữa các bên liên quan trong việc nhân rộng mô hình chăm sóc SKTT dựa vào nhóm gia đình người bệnh tâm thần tại cơ sở.

Các thành viên tham gia hội thảo đánh giá cao mô hình nhóm gia đình người bệnh tâm thần và hy vọng rằng Sở y tế cùng với Sở lao động thương binh xã hội tìm kiếm nguồn hỗ trợ để nhân rộng mô hình trong thời gian tới nhằm nâng cao kiến thức và kỹ năng chăm sóc người bệnh cho gia đình cũng như nâng cao sự tự tin, giảm mặc cảm để hòa nhập cộng đồng của gia đình và người bệnh tâm thần.

*Ảnh: Bs Mai Năm – Phó Giám đốc Sở y tế Quảng Trị phát biểu ý kiến.

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Welkom op de nieuwe website!

Beste vrienden,

Welkom op de nieuwe website van MCNV! De nieuwe website speelt een belangrijke rol in onze communicatie naar u als donateur, institutionele of zakelijke partner. Voor geïnteresseerde partners is de site niet alleen een goede kennismaking met ons werk, maar biedt ook ruimte om zelf actief betrokken te raken.

De nieuwe site is volledig afgestemd op alle MCNV-projecten in Zuidoost-Azië op het gebied van gezondheid, sociale integratie, levensonderhoud & klimaatverandering en ondernemerschap, de thema’s van de nieuwe MCNV-strategie. De site is beschikbaar in het Engels, Vietnamees en Nederlands. Via deze website zullen we u op de hoogte blijven houden van ons werk en alle relevante ontwikkelingen.

Veel plezier met het verkennen van de website en aarzel niet om uw feedback met ons te delen.



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Visit to Laos and Vietnam

Pieter van den Hombergh is a member of MCNV’s Supervisory Board, since 2016. After a brief flirtation with MCNV as a student in 1968, he became a tropical doctor and worked in Tanzania and Kenya. Later, as a family doctor in Almere city, he also remained active for Africa. At the end of 2018 he visited Vietnam and Laos on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of MCNV.

“I had not been in Vietnam since 1995, when there were still mainly bicycles in Hanoi. MCNV’s 50th anniversary was a great opportunity to visit Laos and Vietnam and I decided to take a holiday trip there together with my wife and some relatives. We cycled from the old Laotian capital Luang Prabang all the way to Vientiane and from there we took a plane to Vietnam. Laos had always been a mysterious distant land for me. It is a poor country but it is rich in culture. A country with very charming people and in the MCNV office that was no different. LEARN and Canteen are the MCNV projects in Laos, LEARN conducts research into nutrition and mother & child care. The Laos government is eager for health data in order to develop better policies, and the first LEARN reports have been greatly appreciated. A very nice project that leads to many contacts back and forth with VU and Wageningen and to exchanging of students.

Heart-warming event

The 50th anniversary ceremony of MCNV in Hanoi was a big success. For the fourth time already, MCNV received the Medal of Friendship from the president of Vietnam, presented by Mr. Don Tuan Phong of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organizations. We were moved by the many large flower bouquets and congratulation gifts, including carvings made by handicapped people in the various MCNV projects. An emotional and beautiful film was shown with archive footage and reports of current projects, that showed 50 years of MCNV pass in a nutshell. The film featured Ad Spijkers and Ron Marchand, former MCNV staff members. The event was very well organized by local MCNV staff. One staff member – Hieu – had arranged for everyone in Laos and the Netherlands to be able to watch it live on Facebook. The ambassador of the Netherlands spoke, the Vietnamese TV broadcasted a summary and it hit the front page of the Vietnam Times. Everything that makes MCNV so special became clearly visible: the quality for everyone, but especially the less fortunate and people with disabilities, to engage in inspiring activities, in progress. So beautiful and heart-warming. Many were clearly emotional during the event and I felt that lump in my throat too. The event concluded with a stand-up buffet and beautiful music.

To experience the added value of projects

That Sunday we went to see a Microfinance project that was once started by MCNV. The chairwoman together with 20 other women received us and offered us tea with guava and pomelos. A number of women told us frankly and in detail how they had used the loans, often only a few hundred dollars, and how it had helped them to regain spirit and also some more purchasing power. They invited us in their homes and we could see how one woman had invested in wood, to make alternative medicine, another woman had bought pomelo trees and showed us her orchard, and a third woman showed us a fish pond, where unfortunately all fish had been washed out during a recent flood. They all mentioned how the cooperative had united them. The resulting bond was also an important added value of this project. For me it was not only a special and useful journey but also a journey in which I understood what the MCNV feeling is. After experiencing how honest and heart-warming all the projects are and feeling the dedication of the staff, you understand what drives them.”

Pieter van den Hombergh, vice-chairman of the Supervisory Board

*Photo: Mr. Pieter van den Hombergh (second from left) on behalf of MCNV to receive the fourth Medal of Friendship from the Vietnamese Government.


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Working together, out of poverty together!

As soon as we cross the bridge over the Mekong River, the landscape changes. We enter the southern coastal province of Ben Tre, on our way to Binh Dai district. The many waterways make it impossible here to grow crops or to raise livestock on a large scale. The water is brackish and that makes the soil unsuitable for almost all crops. On pieces of land we see coconut palms and some houses. Along the main road there is more activity, a workshop, coffee shop and a few small shops have survived with minimal resources. The people in Binh Dai are poor, you can see that immediately. Many families are even extremely poor, and for them MCNV has started Micro credit projects ten years ago.

In 2009, the Women’s Union asked MCNV for support to provide loans to women in the poorest villages of Binh Dai, so that they could buy a cow, a goat or a couple of ducks to supplement their income. In the beginning the women struggled to repay the borrowed money. Some groups now succeed in providing loans using the paid back money. They save a little together and help each other out if they have trouble paying back, for example because a goat dies. They absorb setbacks in the group, thus creating a social safety net. The MCNV project staff supervise the credit groups, giving practical advice and organizing simple training courses on how to handle, borrow and save money. For these women, MCNV’s supervision is indispensable for now, as they are not yet fully confident.

After ten years, aren’t we done yet?

No, we are not there yet. Our experiences with other projects teach us that it takes longer to structurally improve the living conditions of the poorest people. We devised a plan to let more women and their families benefit from the positive effect of the credit groups. By working together in a cooperative production group, such as a mushroom farm or a fish drying facility, the women together can borrow a larger sum of money and thus earn a more stable income. The first groups started in Binh Dai in 2016 and we hope to be able to start another 22 together with our partners until 2020.

What do we know about mushrooms?

Nguyen Thi Anh Tho (37, son of 11), leader of the oyster mushroom group in An Phu, at first thought it would be impossible to grow mushrooms. “We had to come up with something to make money, because the vegetable and fruit harvest often failed because of the brackish water here. The Women’s Union told us: why don’t you grow oyster mushrooms, that is a good product to sell. But what did we know about that? We started in 2016 with 20 women and a loan of 186 million Dong (approx. 7000 Euro) and we received an explanation from a man who knew everything about oyster mushrooms. By working very hard, we have managed to earn a steady income. Our group now has 27 women. We are very proud of that!”

Phan Ngoc Minh is 36 and has 2 children aged 10 and 14. She enjoys working here. She used to be a tailor but there was not much demand for her work, she also works in rice growing. “Working in a group is good for me, I use the extra money for food and school expenses. I can now buy more for my children. I work here 8 hours a day. What is the best part? Harvesting the mushrooms!”

More work for more women

Along the road, in My Chanh village, we visit the new cooking group of leader Hong Van. She says: “Almost everyone works here during the day and there are many large gatherings such as weddings and funerals. It takes the villagers a lot of time to cook for all those people. We offer to cook at people’s homes or we prepare the food at home in my kitchen and then take it away.” By working together, the women will soon be able to cook for large groups of up to 600 guests, they calculated. Because most women work in the fields or keep a cow, and have no experience cooking for groups, they started following a cooking course together. Hong Van: “With the money loan, we will soon be able to buy cooking utensils, bowls, chopsticks, and even a refrigerator. And if all goes well, also a motorbike with a trailer to be able to deliver the food faster.” These women are enthusiastic and have plenty of plans, and when they leave they proudly offer their self-made calling card from the Hong Van Cooking Group.

Our request from you

We request your (extra) contribution this spring so that MCNV staff can continue to supervise the credit groups in Ben Tre. It is not easy to find extra money for these costs, the project money is only meant to give loans to the women. That is why we ask for your help! With an amount of € 20,000 the MCNV staff in Ben Tre can continue their advisory and support work until the summer of 2020. Only with your support can we continue to help the poorest women!

By Saskia Stevens

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Dreams become deeds

Staying healthy, finishing school, finding a job. When you are 15 years old and you grow up in a remote, poor village in Central Vietnam, some basic conditions for a ‘normal’ life seem to be lacking. MCNV started a project in Huong Hoa in which we look beyond the health of teenage girls. 

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MCNV’s 50th Anniversary in Hanoi

This video shows the celebration of 50th anniversary on November 16th, 2018. The event took place at the International Convention Center in Hanoi with the participation of about 150 guests representatives of ministries, sectors, diplomatic agencies, press, and international and local organisations. On this occasion MCNV honorably received the fourth Order of Friendship from the President of Vietnam. Please follow this link to watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5VTziaGf0w

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MCNV celebrates 50 Years in Amsterdam

Some 175 guests attended the 50th anniversary of MCNV in Amsterdam. Donors from the very first days of MCNV, Mr. Pham Toan Thang and Mr. Nguyen Hai Tinh from the Embassy of Vietnam, staff from Vietnam, Lao PDR and Amsterdam, Supervisory Board members, ex-staff, ex-board members, Ms Mette Gonggrijp from the Dutch Ministery of Foreign Affairs, project partners and friends joined in the celebration in Pakhuis de Zwijger in Amsterdam.

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Short documentary on CANTEEN project

This summer, Dutch journalist Frans Glissenaar travelled to Nong district in Lao PDR to make a documentary on our CANTEEN project. The result of his journey is a so-called IPhone documentary, shot completely with his IPhone.

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