Quang Loi 2010
Impact of the Vietnam War
The use of Agent Orange in the Vietnam War by the U.S. has left many struggling economically in several districts of Vietnam. The chemical resulted in many suffering serious illnesses with others being disabled. Similarly, several genetic diseases that the Vietnamese people battle have also been linked to Agent Orange. With many of the people disabled or ill, they are unable to function economically while those who manage to will have several dependents within the family.
This already unfortunate situation is further exacerbated by the environmental damage done by the spraying of Agent Orange. Forests that could have been economically helpful to the locals were permanently damaged and the diversity of animal species also destroyed. This has left the people of Vietnam in many districts economically stranded with no means of securing a steady stream of income.
And like many other areas in Vietnam, the Quang Loi commune within the Quang Dien district was greatly affected by the toxicity of Agent Orange. Thankfully, the Trust’s effort to assist the Vietnamese people has reached Quang Loi.
Impacting Quang Loi with the Orange Cows program
The Orange Cows projects are some of the most important projects carried out by the Trust. The projects were started to improve the self-sufficiency of the Vietnamese people by raising money to purchase cows for them and helping them gain animal husbandry skills to secure a steady stream of income.
The families to receive the cows in Quang Loi were selected in consultation with the local people’s committee and council. These recipients were also made to sign an agreement where they pledged to not only look after their cows but also deliver the second calf of each cow to another pre-selected family that is also affected by Agent Orange.
Thus, in April 2010, the Trust was able to provide 32 cows via the Orange Cows program to families living in the commune of Quang Loi in Quang Dien district, north of Hue.
In 2012, the Trust partnered with Hue University’s Professor Ba and his colleagues to provide training courses for the people on how to look after their cattle. In 2013/14, the Trust went further to help families that had already been provided with cows. The assistance was in form improving the quality of the stalls for cows in each home as well as making sure the cows were getting the right forage crops.
The programs of the Trust were tailored to help improve the standard of living in communities like Quang Loi. This is majorly improving the financial conditions of the community through cattle rearing. This way, more families in Quang Loi would gain self-sufficiency and this would have an overall impact on the economic condition of the commune.
The established structure of the programs also helps to further support the community. Since each recipient family is required to give a calm to other families that are yet to benefit from the program, the program could very well serve as a catalyst for development in the communities.
The provision of a way to gain a steady stream of income in these communities would also go a long way to improve their health as the lack of financial capacity to care for the disabled and ill would be mitigated. With the new source of self-sufficiency, families can better care for individuals who are still living with bodily consequences of Agent Orange.