An exchange highlighting the spirit of victims of Agent Orange/dioxin was held in Ho Chi Minh City on August 10 as part of activities nationwide to mark the 52nd anniversary of the first spraying of the toxic chemical by the US Army (1961-2013).

At the event, organised by the Association of Agent Orange/Dioxin Victims in the city, individuals and organisations donated nearly 7 billion VND in support of the victims.

On this occasion, the association also presented 70 scholarships, worth from 500,000 VND to one million VND to primary, secondary and high school students while tertiary students were offered three million VND each. It also handed over 10 million VND to each of eight AO infected families.

According to statistics, there are 20,000 people exposed or infected by AO/dioxin in HCM City.

The same day, the Association for AO/Dioxin Victims in the Mekong Delta province of Vinh Long in association with voluntary doctors provided free treatment and medicine for and presented gifts to 100 AO victims in Trung Hiep commune, Vung Liem district.

Earlier, the association in cooperation with the provincial Buddhist Sangha offered 100 gifts worth 55 million VND to the victims in Tra On district.

The province is now home to 6,600 AO victims, half of them are children, according Chairman of the association Phan Thanh Rang.

On the occasion of the Day for AO Victims (August 10), construction of the first detoxification and rehabilitation centre for the victims in central Da Nang City started on August 9.

The two-storey building, on 200sq.m of land, will include sauna rooms, laboratory and rehabilitation unit. It was funded with 108,000 USD from the Harris Freeman Foundation.

The centre is scheduled to be completed by the end of this year.

Da Nang has more than 5,000 AO victims, of which 1,400 are children.

Meanwhile, the Thua Thien-Hue provincial Association for AO Victims and the Red Cross Association jointly held an art exhibition, featuring 52 art works of painter Cao Le Quang, who is exposed to AO/dioxin.

The proceeds will be donated to the provincial fund for AO victims.

On the occasion, the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang presented 500 gift sets worth a total 100 million VND to AO families.-VNA