Khmer people at a prayer inside a Khmer pagoda (Photo: VNA)

Can Tho (VNA) – A 200-billion-VND project on vocational and Khmer script training targeting Khmer ethnic people in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho is set to begin in March.

Coordinated by the municipal Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs and Committee on Ethnic Minority Affairs, the project will be carried out in the districts of O Mon, Co Do, and Thoi Lai, which are home to large Khmer communities. Authorities in the three districts will use local budgets to cover nearly 100 billion VND (4.4 million USD) of the project’s total cost.

Chau Hong Thai, deputy head of the Can Tho Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, said the project aims at opening 60 vocational training courses in 50 different occupations in 2018.

The classes will train about 700 working-age Khmer people and offer them job consultancy at the end of their courses, Thai added.

The department said it will work with district-level administrative units to open training courses catering to the needs of companies and investors operating in the localities. These businesses will engage in the training on a voluntary basis and recruiting Khmer trainees, with employment contracts lasting at least one year after the candidates finishing their courses. As of February 2018, Taekwang footwear company and Vinatex Can Tho plant have agreed to take part.

Initiatives facilitating ethnic women’s handicraft production, which have been proved effective in the three districts, will be expanded and aided to better connect with buyers.   

As part of the project, the city will help Khmer startups in agriculture to access loans, efficient farming techniques, and high-quality sources of animal and plant varieties.

Concerning Khmer script education, Luong Van Tru, head of the Can Tho Committee on Ethnic Minority Affairs, said the city prioritises teaching the language among the community rather than just a subject in secondary education.

The communal-based training will involve monks from Khmer pagodas as teachers, with classes taking place at Khmer pagodas or residents’ houses and their costs covered by the municipal association for education promotion.

The committee has called for further donations, which can be in the forms of learning materials, teaching equipment, and scholarships, among others, to assist the education of Khmer language.-VNA