|Divorced women returning from the Republic of Korea attend a bartender class at the Vietnam-Korea Care Centre in Can Tho City (Source: thoidai.com)
The first phase of the project 'Vietnam–Korea Joint Care' was launched by the Women’s Association of Can Tho city and the Korea Centre for United Nations Human Rights Policy (KOCUN) in October, 2016.
At a ceremony to mark the end of the project's first phase last week, Duong Tan Hien, Vice Chairman of the Can Tho City People’s Committee, said the project was very meaningful for the Vietnamese women and their Vietnamese-Korean children.
It was reported that from 2005 to 2018, more than 75,000 women in the city got married to Korean men but of those, nearly 15,000 got divorced and returned to Vietnam with financial burdens. Additionally, their children who returned to Vietnam faced barriers in attending school and integrating in society.
Hien said the project helped prepare women for marriage with Korean men and helped protect the rights of returnees after their divorce.
During the first phase of the project, last year, the Vietnam-Korea Centre Care was built in the city’s Cai Rang district. The two-storey building includes a legal advice office, library, kitchen, canteen, classrooms and sport court. It provides support to returnee brides with vocational training, job creation and loans for starting a business. Lawyers of the legal advice office assist in solving problems related to divorce, naturalisation and birth certification.
According to the city’s Women Association, it and the KOCUN offered courses to more than 6,000 women in the Mekong Delta before leaving for Korea for marriage.
More than 1,000 returnee brides were offered Korean language courses and some 3,000 families received legal advice, while a library was opened for children of Vietnamese-Korean families.
Chairwomen of the Can Tho Women’s Association Diep Thi Thu Hong said women were also offered job training.
Hong said the project also helped brides-to-be learn about Korean culture to prepare for their future marriage.
In cases when Vietnamese women are victims of domestic abuse, the centre helped them contact authorities and handled legal procedures and costs so they could return to Vietnam.
According to the Korea Statistics Bureau, by the end of 2016, almost one out of five Vietnamese married women in Korea (19.25 percent) was divorced. One of every six Vietnamese women getting married to Korean men is from Can Tho city. The number of Vietnamese-Korean divorced families with adolescent children accounted for 19 percent of total cases.
The 'Vietnam–Korea Joint Care' project was funded with 22 billion VND by the Hyundai Motor Company and the Korean Social Welfare Relief Fund.