© Mr Thahn, SCDI 

We’re on the frontline of HIV prevention in Vietnam, helping marginalised communities such as people who use drugs better protect themselves from the risk of HIV.

Although the HIV epidemic in Vietnam has improved in recent years, injecting drug use continues to pose a particular risk of transmitting the virus. HIV adversely affects other groups, too, such as men who have sex with men (MSM) and female sex workers. Despite an improving picture, discrimination and poor access to services in remote areas continue to provide challenges for those most effected by the epidemic.

We want to keep the momentum going, so we work with marginalised communities to help them access vital HIV prevention services.


 Around 230,000 people are living with HIV in Vietnam.

  • Approximately 190,000 people inject drugs.
  • 11% of people who inject drugs are living with HIV.


The Center for Supporting Community Development Initiatives (SCDI) 

We work with SCDI to support marginalised communities in Vietnam play a greater part in their country’s HIV response.

SCDI’s needle and syringe programmes support the prevention of HIV transmission in Vietnam among people who use drugs. Alongside this, they work with the Vietnamese government to explore different approaches to drug use in Vietnam, particularly around shifting from a compulsory detention model to voluntary, community-based addiction treatment.

SCDI also supports self-help groups for marginalised populations, providing mentoring and legal support, research, and training for other community organisations. For example, in 2017, the team worked with the Vietnam Network of Transgender People, advocating for their rights and needs during the development of the country’s draft Law on Gender Affirmation.


During 2018, SCDI reached: 

  • 28,428 people from marginalised communities with HIV prevention activities.
  • 7,830 people with needle and syringe programmes.
  • Started a new pilot model called ‘Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion’ in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.  The models aim is to create a mechanism for law enforcement to refer people with drug use disorders to their required social and health services.  This helps to prevent people who use drugs from ending up in jail or compulsory rehabilitation centres.
  • Contributed to at least six successful advocacy/law reform initiatives on public policy for marginalised populations.

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