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How to Support the Locals during Ho Chi Minh City Lockdown


Ho Chi Minh has been under lockdown for more than two months and there haven't been many positive signs that the strict COVID guidelines would be lifted or eased up as more than 3,000 cases are found daily. Life in the city has been turned upside down, with many businesses being forced to close down, and the most vulnerable group is the low-income community in Ho Chi Minh City. They are primarily workers from other regions coming to Ho Chi Minh to work at factories, local-scale business owners, or street food hawkers. Therefore, not only are they threatened by the deadly various, but their livelihood is also on the line as the city's majority of economic activities have come to a standstill. It is of utmost importance to take care of ourselves and our family during this time, but if possible, you might also want to give back to the local community as a way to support them during this challenging time.

support locals in hcm empty streets

Ever since the curfew order, Ho Chi Minh streets fall into the never-before-seen emptiness

To learn more about the lockdown situation in Ho Chi Minh, see our blog on How Ho Chi Minh City is Dealing with COVID-19.

Regarding how to support the locals during Ho Chi Minh City lockdown, below are a few trustworthy charity organizations that you can donate to or participate in to help alleviate the toll that COVID has taken on Ho Chi Minh City.

International NGOs in Vietnam - How to Support the Locals during Ho Chi Minh City Lockdown

For the latest information on the COVID situation in Ho Chi Minh and in Vietnam, international NGOs are the place you can trust. These NGOs in Vietnam focus on covering the latest concerns regarding the effect of COVID and COVID vaccination in Vietnam. Some NGOs you can look into are:

UNICEF Vietnam: ensuring the healthy development and of children across Vietnam, and now making sure that the children are safe from the lethal effects of COVID.

Blue Dragon Vietnam: initially working towards ending children and women trafficking in Vietnam, now with the Coronavirus around, Blue Dragon is also working to provide meals and shelters for the homeless.

Red Cross Vietnam: running closely with Vietnam's medical system since 1946, Red Cross Vietnam is still working tirelessly to protect the people against the damage of natural disasters and pandemics.

Local NGOs in Vietnam - How to Support the Locals during Ho Chi Minh City Lockdown

Aside from the popular global agencies, the local organizations in Vietnam are also working relentlessly, especially during the lockdown, to assist the affected areas and communities. Though smaller in scale, they are the ones who understand the people's situation the most and are vigilant about more specific concerns than just about food and health insecurities, albeit being a bit less urgent.

support locals in hcm restricted areas

Parts of the street/alley is restricted because there have been newly found cases, and locals are prohibited from going outside, and they only rely on donations or emergency packages from the government

Help A Teacher (H.A.T): providing support to help teachers (especially kindergarten teachers) as schools are advised to move to the online platform.

Lotus Charity Fund (Quy Tu Thien Bong Sen): providing the vulnerable community and quarantined areas with meals, emergency kits, educational aids, and job opportunities.

From Saigon to Saigon: providing meals to the economically disadvantaged labor workers, especially those who were put out of job because of the pandemic

Hear Us Now (H.U.N): aiding hearing-impaired students with educational opportunities as their schoolwork is hindered by the outbreak, as well as helping the unemployed deaf and hard of hearing labors

Apps and Social Media - How to Support the Locals during Ho Chi Minh City Lockdown

Suppose you want to reach out to the disadvantaged locals by yourself around your neighborhood. In that case, thankfully, there is helpful technology and online forums where you can have access to families and individuals needing help.

SOS map: there is both a website version and an app where people can call out for help (food, medicines, etc.) and you can reach out to them via the contact details on the app.

Zalo app: The famous messaging platform in Vietnam has added a new feature called Zalo Connect, which operates similarly to SOS map. Simply log into Zalo, go to Timeline (the clock icon), and click Join now, then choose whether you are asking for help or you're looking to help others, and you're all set to find the locals that are in need.

For more choices of food delivery platforms, see How to Order Groceries Online in Vietnam

Note: As most cases on these platforms are written in Vietnamese, we would advise you to have a local or a Vietnamese-speaking friend to help you clarify and contact the people in need.

See more Where to Donate in Vietnam

Wrapping up on How to Support the Locals during Ho Chi Minh City Lockdown

We understand that all of us are stuck under undesirable situations right now, in which many of us are working from home and struggling to buy food. However, those who could barely make ends meet before the lockdown time are in a significantly more dire situation. One humble meal might seem minor to some, but it can make a much bigger difference to others.

For more information about the COVID-19 Guidelines, visit our detailed guide on Vietnam Travel COVID-19 Regulations or feel free to let us know in the comments.


© Written by Kim Hoang for



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