Caritas Vietnam launches pro-life programmes
In one year, atleast 1.7 million abortions were performed. Catholic activists renew their action to protect life, provide health education and safeguard the unborn child.
Caritas Vietnam has decided to double its efforts to provide sex education and protect life, right from the stage of conception, considering the rise in the number of abortions in Vietnam, especially among youth.
“The courses offered by the Catholic charity aim at protecting life and teaching healthy sexuality, through the participation of catechists and catechumens at community and parish levels,” a Caritas volunteer said in Saigon recently.
Vietnam, a nation that for decades believed in traditional family values, is at present at second position for maximum number of abortions, after China. Every year, at least 1.7 million women terminate their pregnancy, 300,000 of them are teenagers. Catholic activists and pro-life movements are alarmed by the latest figures.
Changing social mores, greater commercialisation and commodification of sex contribute to increase in abortions. Youngsters are reluctant to start a family, rather would resort to abortions and continue in a relationship without commitment.
“In my class, at least 14% students have had sex before marriage,” said a student from Ho Chi Minh City’s University of Social Sciences and Humanities. If they conceive, while still in school, they go for medical termination.
“This is not a worrisome social phenomenon because terminating a pregnancy has now become something normal,” said another student.
“When you do not have money, every means is good to make a living and raise money to continue studying,” he said referring to students who get into sex trade to pay for their studies.
Caritas is present in 17 of the country’s 26 dioceses and have presence in Ho Chi Minh City since 2004. Volunteers who have been working in the country’s central highlands for the last 22 years said they have created awareness and were able to stop at least 2000 abortions.
“However, in the old capital of South Vietnam, the number of abortions is growing exponentially. This is why we want to promote programmes for the protection of life, as well as provide psychological counselling and medical care to young people and involve more boys and girls in the project”, said Sister Maria Raymonde, a member of Caritas Saigon.
Please visit the cemetery of aborted children in Pleiku, Viet Nam at: http://giupkontum.org/en/video-en/364-cemeteryofabortedchildren