(Dai bieu nhan dan Newspaper)
Our business trip to 3 regions, North, Central, South has shown deficiencies in vocational training for countryside labor, especially jobs suitable for local demand and funding for development. If they are not properly addressed, Project 1956 might be at risk of becoming just a movement.
Lesson 1: Borrowed money is not as good as skill
Lesson 3: Duplication of good models
Selecting inappropriate job
One of Project 1956’s shortcomings is selection of vocational field for training. Many provinces, cities built 50 – 60 jobs, but after a period of implementation, now only 1/3 of those professions remain alive with exception of some provinces where only a handful number of jobs remain. This is the underlying cause explaining why equipments that cost billion VND are left used. For example, at Southeast region’s vocational training and employment support center – an unit involved in training as part of Project 1956 (a member of Vietnam Farmer’s Union) is based in Long An province, equipments and facilities are left used since 2013. Mr. Lan Van Tan – The Center’s representative said, the center management is not complete, there are no permanent teachers, training permit has yet to be issued, therefore the company has no complete control over its operation. Apart from that, other necessities for vocational training such as electricity, metal cutting machinery….are transported to the Center by Vietnam’s Farmer Union thus majority of these devices are not appropriate for demand of the school and laborers. “As you can see, you have to place them into warehouse , equipments and facilities worth 70 billion VND are resting there testing the time”, Mr. Tan laments.
Not only waste money, selecting inappropriate professions leads to a sequence of consequences for both laborers as well as vocational training schools. Duration of training for some non-agricultural jobs is too short, consequently laborers are unable to meet job requirement from enterprises, result is unemployment followed by unemployment. Or, instead of incorporating selection of profession for farmer training into local plan, some localities just followed the movement, provided widespread trainings not in line with the demand of labor market which ultimately results in farmer’s unemployment after completion of training course. During previous years, Quang Tri province chose rubber plantation to be field of study for training farmers whilst this plant is unlikely to survive typhoon-prone areas. After some severe typhoons, many trees collapsed and this pushed many farmers into distress.
Lack of funding, difficulty in finding buyers
Currently there are 4,355 training courses for countryside laborers, in which 1,719 training courses are related to agricultural jobs and 2,636 are associated with non-agricultural jobs. Proportion of countryside laborers who earn a job after completion of training course is 78.7%.
Selecting appropriate job is only one of important factors. It might be unlikely for farmers to sustain a living without another important condition – capital. Ms. Bui Thi Thanh who is living Chua hamlet, Thong Nhat commune, Hoa Binh city said, her husband was infected with Agent Orange, her children are also not very healthy, she has to carry the burden of family responsibilities on her own, no matter how hard she tried, escaping poverty is seemingly impossible task. Nearly one year ago, Commune’s authority gave her a chance to participate in a training course on chicken raising. After 3 months of training, Commune Women’s Union provided her with a loan worth 20 million VND as part of loan program sponsored by Vietnam Bank for Social Policies, she decided in invest money to buy 1,000 chickens, gooses. This flock of poultry is now nearly 14 weeks in age, in approximately 2 upcoming weeks they may be ready for sale, but “there may not be enough of supply for market”, ms. Thanh predicts. After fully comprehending raising techniques, she wishes to receive further loans to expand her flock of poultry with the aim to increase the income for her family and create more jobs for her female neighbors. Ms. Thanh can be seen as a lucky case because even though she has yet to get a chance to expand her business operation but the training she received still guarantees her a sufficient living. Many other people have to give up in the middle of the road or be unable to complete their projects due to lack of finance.
After securing finance, finding buyers for product is subsequent matter to concern about. This is not only the challenge of learners of vocational training courses within Project 1956 but challenge of farmers nationwide. Households that succeed in raising and farming are households who compete for raising, farming without taking into consideration the market demand, the result is the flooding of unconsumed products after several harvests. Only ones who are deft at steering their business operation can survive. Those who are weak, lacks funding are more vulnerable to giving up their business. Farmers in Thua Thien Hue, Quang Binh, Long An…we have met said they wished to have a distribution center for their product. Is this really that difficult?
(Our business trip to 3 regions, North, Central, South has shown deficiencies in vocational training for countryside labor, especially jobs suitable for local demand and funding for development. If they are not properly addressed, Project 1956 might be at risk of becoming just a movement.
Lesson 1: Borrowed money is not as good as skill
Lesson 3: Duplication of good models)