The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) projects have helped improve drug and HIV awareness among ethnic minority people in four northern mountainous provinces since they were launched in 2008.

This assessment was revealed at a conference in Hanoi on March 12 to review the UNODC projects to prevent drug abuse and HIV among Vietnamese ethnic minority people and provide technical assistance for detoxification and rehabilitation at centres and in the community.

Speaking at the event, UNODC Office Director Zhuldyz Akisheva said UNODC will increase technical and financial support in order to make its detoxification service packages more suitable to each locality.

Through the projects, which have been implemented in 27 communes in Lao Cai, Son La, Yen Bai and Dien Bien provinces, ethnic minority people have been now more aware of the harmful effects and dangers of drugs and HIV, making an effective contribution to preventing the spread of drug use and HIV in their communities.

Participants at the conference pointed out difficulties during the implementation of the projects such as poor road infrastructure causing slow and dangerous travel, low educational level and unsound customs in target localities.

They suggested education dissemination work be in diverse forms with easily understandable content, to allow easy understanding by ethnic minority people.-VNA