Strengthening the resilience of smallholder agriculture to climate change-induced water insecurity in the Central Highlands and South-Central Coast regions of Vietnam

Project Summary

The project is designed to empower vulnerable smallholders in five provinces of the Central Highlands and South-Central Coast regions of Vietnam – especially poor, near poor, ethnic minority, and economically women-dependent households – to manage increasing climate risks to agricultural production by securing water availability, adopting climate-resilient agricultural practices, and strengthening access to actionable agro-climate information, credit, and markets.

The project also promotes women’s economic empowerment and maximizes social and environmental benefits for vulnerable groups via gender-sensitive and social inclusive approach. Results and good practices of the project will be integrated into Viet Nam’s development strategies and policies.


Viet Nam is particularly vulnerable to climate change and already impacted by more irregular and intense climate variability and change.

Two of the regions most vulnerable to climate risks affecting smallholder farmers are the Central Highlands and South-Central Coast.

Changes in precipitation are leading to increasing deficits in surface and ground water availability for agricultural production with longer periods of severe water scarcity during the dry season and increased frequency and intensity of droughts. Overall agricultural productivity is falling, with corresponding declines in yields and incomes particularly harmful to small-scale farmers, particularly poor and near-poor, ethnic minority and women farmers - with plots of equal or less than 1.0 ha farming land, who are dependent on one or two rain-fed crops per year, are the most vulnerable to climate change impacts.

Major Achievements

These are the targeted achievements:

  • 21.228 households benefit from Farmer Field Schools, activities to promote women economic empowerment and gender equality.

Some will also get other benefits:

  • 16.200 households will benefit from training in water saving techniques

  • 4.765 households will receive ‘last mile connection’ to larger irrigation infrastructure

  • 8.621 households will receive water efficiency system vouchers

  • 8.621 households get Climate Resilient Agriculture vouchers

  • 2.033 households will benefit from new or retrofitted ponds in rain-fed areas

Project Outcome

The project’s outcome is strengthened adaptive capacity and reduced exposure to climate risks of small-scale farmers especially women and ethnic minorities, in Central Highlands and South-Central Coast regions of Vietnam.

The project has three immediate results:

  1. Modernized irrigation systems providing on- demand irrigation services to farmers in the five participating provinces

  2. Strengthened resilience of agricultural systems through climate-resilient agricultural practices

  3. Improved capacities of small- scale farmers and institutions to generate localized climate info for agricultural and climate-risk management and to access markets and credit

Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) component

A Gender Action Plan is integrated into the project to ensure that women and men have equal access to and control over the resources needed to implement climate-resilient agricultural production in the face of climate-induced rainfall variability and droughts.

The project will ensure meaningful participation of ethnic minorities throughout the project cycle. The Environmental and Social Management Framework and Indigenous People’s Planning Framework will ensure that all project activities enhance the climate resilience of ethnic minorities benefitting from project interventions and opportunities while also respecting and preserving ethnic minorities’ culture including rights to lands, territories, resources, knowledge systems, and traditional livelihoods and practices.