Update:  GMT+7

Belgian parliamentary leader visits Quang Tri

A delegation of Belgian legislators led by President of the Senate Stephanie D'Hose on August 23 conducted a visit and collaborative activities in the central province of Quang Tri.

The trip was part of the official visit to Vietnam by Belgian Senate President Stephanie D'Hose from August 21-25, in which the Belgian delegation engaged in a productive visit and collaborative efforts within Quang Tri Province. This visit was extended in response to an invitation from the Chairman of the Vietnamese National Assembly, Vuong Dinh Hue.

Belgian parliamentary leader visits Quang Tri

The Belgian delegation and leaders of Quang Tri. Photo: Duc Viet

In a warm welcome to the delegation, Hoang Nam, Vice Chairman of the Provincial People“s Committee, briefed an overview of Quang Tri”s evolution over the past five decades, underscoring the enduring impact of conflict on regions like Huong Hoa District.

Despite commendable progress since the war“s end, areas such as Huong Hoa and Dakrong districts remain challenged by socio-economic hardships, a legacy of war”s influence, said Nam. The Vice Chairman highlighted the instrumental role of international NGOs and organizations, including the Belgian Government, in assisting Quang Tri Province's recovery efforts.

Belgian parliamentary leader visits Quang Tri

Belgian Senate President Stephanie D'Hose and students from Huc Secondary School. Photo: Duc Viet

“Their collaborative endeavors have encompassed diverse programs and initiatives to address the aftermath of war and natural disasters, aiding victims of landmines, unexploded ordnance (UXO), and Agent Orange/dioxin,” he said.

Notably, the tangible impact of these initiatives has been particularly pronounced in challenging regions like Huong Hoa and Dakrong, where socio-economic growth has been stimulated and the lives of beneficiaries uplifted.

Belgian parliamentary leader visits Quang Tri

The Belgian Senate President Stephanie D'Hose and other delegates participate in the traditional Cheraw dance. Photo: Duc Viet

Expressing hopes for ongoing collaboration, the Vice Chairman extended a request for sustained support from the Belgian Government, facilitated through NGOs and international entities. This support is sought for broader goals, including post-conflict recovery, socio-economic advancement, and assistance to victims of landmines, UXO, and Agent Orange/dioxin in Vietnam and Quang Tri Province specifically, Nam suggested.

At the meeting, Stephanie D'Hose, the President of the Belgian Senate, conveyed her sincere delight at embarking on an official visit to Vietnam and the subsequent opportunity to explore Quang Tri. She sincerely appreciated the warm and cordial reception experienced during her time in Vietnam, particularly within Quang Tri Province.

Belgian parliamentary leader visits Quang Tri

Belgian Senate President Stephanie D'Hose talks with students of the Huc Secondary School. Photo: Duc Viet

The visit was significant, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Belgium and Vietnam, reinforcing the enduring rapport between the two nations. Stephanie D'Hose highlighted the dual purpose of her visit: to gain firsthand insight into the endeavors taking place in Quang Tri and to strengthen the bond between the Belgian Senate and Vietnam.

Belgian parliamentary leader visits Quang Tri

The Senate President and locals at Huc Commune. Photo: Duc Viet

Impressed by the efficacy of initiatives supported by the Belgian Government, she assured her commitment to further advocate for Vietnamese interests. She pledged her ongoing efforts to secure support from Belgium for addressing the war aftermath, studying the long-term implications of Agent Orange, and aiding Agent Orange/dioxin victims.

Within their activities in Quang Tri, the delegation visited the “Preschool teachers apply teaching knowledge and skills to create a language-rich learning environment for children in Quang Tri Province, period 2022-2026” (TALK project) run by VVOB, Belgium. Initiated in 2022, the TALK project is funded by the Belgian Government and partners, extending its influence to disadvantaged regions such as Quang Tri, Dien Bien, and Gia Lai, characterized by high levels of impoverished households and ethnic minorities.

The project“s focal point is enhancing the capabilities of educators and school administrators in cultivating language-rich learning environments in Quang Tri”s preschools. Executed in the challenging districts of Dakrong and Huong Hoa, the TALK project encompasses 41 preschools, catering to a total of 1,347 administrators, teachers, and 11,890 preschoolers, with ethnic minority children constituting 66.52% of the beneficiaries. Vo Van Minh, Deputy Director of the Department of Education and Training, shared during the meeting that over a year of TALK project implementation, its training components have yielded practical benefits.

The training regimen has empowered educational administrators to refine school management abilities, nurturing a conducive work atmosphere and prioritizing the advancement of teaching skills among educators. The training sessions have enabled preschool teachers to grasp contemporary pedagogical methodologies and techniques. "Encouraging interaction, teamwork, and an analytical approach have equipped administrators and teachers to integrate acquired knowledge and skills into their professional undertakings.

This approach has fostered an inviting and constructive teaching environment, playing a pivotal role in augmenting Vietnamese language proficiency, especially for ethnic minority children whose education is grounded in their native language," said Minh. On the same day, the delegation participated in the initiatives orchestrated by Plan International within Huc Commune.

They engaged in a media event hosted at Huc Secondary School to amplify societal consciousness regarding gender disparities and child marriage. Additionally, the delegation ventured to Van Ri village's stilted houses cluster in Huc Commune, Huong Hoa District, where they interacted with the local populace.

Duc Viet - Ngoc Mai

Duc Viet - Ngoc Mai

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