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May 25, 2022 / 15:25

UNDP supports flood-resilient houses for Vietnam coastal residents

It’s estimated to cost US$330 million to provide housing for climate-vulnerable in 28 coastal provinces in Vietnam.

Dozens of vulnerable people in Quang Binh, one of Vietnam’s localities heavily affected by natural disasters, will soon benefit from a housing program supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), World Share, and local authorities.

 Phan Manh Hung, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee of Quang Binh Province, at the ground-breaking ceremony on May 19. Photos: UNDP

As many as 73 poor households will receive the houses which are scheduled to be handed over at the end of July 2022, marking the second time that UNDP, the Korean non-governmental organization World Share, and the People’s Committee of Quang Binh Province build storm- and flood-resilient houses for local coastal residents.

The first handover of 39 safe houses took place in December 2021 to poor families severely suffering from the floods in 2020.

In 2020 alone, the province suffered the consequences of 4 historic floods, which caused damage to thousands of households.

Speaking at the ceremony held last week, Phan Manh Hung, Vice Chairman of the People's Committee of Quang Binh Province, said UNDP and World Share’s support for building flood-resistant houses are efficient and effective in the context that many local people face difficulties after each storm and flood season every year, mostly the historic floods in 2020.

According to Patrick Haverman, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Vietnam, all of these houses have withstood the impacts of floods and storms and multiple tropical depressions that landed in Quang Binh in 2020 and 2021. “We are happy to know that beneficiary households feel very safe living in these custom-built resilient houses. We can deploy further support to more people in the region,” he said.

Kuyng Jea Hyeon, Country Director of World Share in Vietnam, said realizing that many more people need stable habitats urgently after the construction of the houses in 2021, World Share and UNDP have continued to support the construction of 73 more safe houses. “We hope that these 73 resilient houses will serve as temporary shelter for nearby families who are at risk of flooding,” he noted.  

 Patrick Haverman, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Vietnam, at the construction site.

Efficient and effective model

Receiving support from the Government of Vietnam and UNDP since 2018, storm- and flood-resilient housing is one of the most effective measures to help protect the lives and properties of the local people in coastal provinces. These resilient housing models are initiated by the Government of Vietnam in close cooperation with UNDP and the Green Climate Fund (GCF).

Exactly as designed, they safely protected the lives and livelihoods of their owners and, in many communities, also protected neighbors living nearby. “We are committed to building another 1,450 homes from 2022 to 2025 and expanding to Binh Dinh and Ca Mau,” said Caitlin Wiesen, UNDP Resident Representative in Vietnam.

A recent study conducted by UNDP and the Ministry of Construction showed that over 110,000 families still live without safe housing across 28 coastal provinces. It requires an amount of US$330 million to provide housing for climate-vulnerable in Vietnam. Wiesen said in a joint collaborative well-planned effort, it is possible to blend both public and private financing to mobilize the funding. It is an essential investment for ensuring a Just Climate Transition that benefits the most vulnerable and left behind.

 Dao Xuan LaiAssistant Resident Representative introduces the flood-resilient housing model to Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh at an international conference in Hanoi in mid-May.