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Annual text-to-donate drive launched to raise money for AO/Dioxin victims

by NDO15 July 2021 Last updated at 19:00 PM

VTV.vn - The Vietnam Association for Victims of Agent Orange/Dioxin (VAVA) has launched a text-to-donate drive to raise money for AO/Dioxin victims in Vietnam which will run through September 10.

The VAVA is calling people across the country to support the drive by texting DA CAM, DACAM, or DC to 1409. Each message means a donation worth VND 20,000 (US$ 0.87) to the Vietnamese AO/Dioxin victims who are struggling to make ends meet every day.

The fund raised will be used to financially support the victims to receive healthcare services and vocational training; and repair and build houses. It will also be spent to present gifts to those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The drive is the VAVA’s annual fund-raising event. Last year, it received more than 53,000 texts from March 9 to May 8, worth over VND 1 billion. Most of the money collected was used to provide aid to AO/Dioxin victims affected by historic floods in six central cities and provinces. The remainder was allocated to help a victim’s family build a new house and present gifts to others on the occasion of Tet, Vietnam’s traditional New Year Festival.

From 1961 to 1971, the US military sprayed about 80 million litres of toxic chemicals, 61 percent of which were Agent Orange, containing 366 kg of dioxin, on to nearly a quarter of South Vietnam. About 86% of the area was sprayed more than two times, 11% of the area was sprayed more than 10 times.

As a result, around 4.8 million Vietnamese were exposed to the toxic chemical. Many of the victims have died, while millions of their descendants are living with deformities and diseases as a direct result of the chemical’s effects.

According to Vu Thi Quyen, a lecturer in biology at the Van Lang University, the AO causes lasting harm to humans and the environment. This substance not only affects those exposed to it but also many following generations, depending on its concentration in the body.

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