Recent reports of children being sexually abused in different parts of the country have highlighted the growing problem.

The Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs estimates that around 2,000 Vietnamese children face violence and abuse annually, of whom 1,200 suffer sexual abuse. Among these, more than 13 percent are girls under the age of six.

Experts have criticised the fact that children in Vietnam learn about sex education too late, which makes them more vulnerable to abuse.

Nguyen Thi Lan Minh, an expert from the Vietnam Association for Protection of Children’s Rights said many parents usually avoid awkward questions about sex from kids, which may lead children to consider such topics taboo. Ultimately, children facing problems may remain silent instead of alerting others.

The Vietnam Association for Protection of Children’s Rights is organising training courses to prevent sex abuse at schools. At the courses, sex education is included in games and stories, making it earlier for pupils to be aware of sex abuse.

Under the current education programmes, children begin sex education in fifth grade.

Experts say it’s too late nowadays, as many children start puberty early.

Moreover, experts also said, to protect children from child abuse, teaching sex education at schools is not enough. The family should take role in raising their children’s awareness of the issue.-VNA