• The local DVV International team in Laos

  • Non-formal training course on food processing in an integrated vocational education training centre, Xayabury Province

  • Ceremony for the opening of the new community learning centre in Phalienai Village, Savannakhet Province

  • The gold-covered Buddhist stupa Pha That Luang in Vientiane is the national symbol of Laos

The DVV International regional and country office in Laos was established in 2009. After the destruction of the country as a result of the civil war and the Vietnam War from 1953-1975, followed  by over a decade of political isolation, the Lao PDR is now experiencing a period of peace, prosperity and regional integration. In the past 20 years, the Lao economy grew by an average of seven percent. But Laos is still one of the least developed countries in the region and much of the population of Laos, which is mostly located in the country, are cut off from the benefits of progress. According to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), almost half of the approximately seven million inhabitants are affected by poverty; about 28 percent live in extreme poverty. The government has focused its education efforts on primary education. Vocational training, higher education and especially non-formal education are much less developed.

Main focus of work

Literacy: DVV International supports literacy courses in 22 villages in the province of Savannaketh. These are based on elements of the REFLECT approach inspired by Paulo Freire (Regenerated Freirian Literacy through Empowering Community Techniques) and concentrate on participatory learning.

Training Centres: In 24 villages in Savannaketh, in connection with the literacy measures, training centres were established (Community Learning and Development Centre - CLDC). In the future these should also transmit income-generating skills and relevant key skills.

Vocational education: Non-formal vocational training programmes were organised jointly with GIZ (Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit). The focus is on approximately ten so-called Integrated Vocational Training centres (IVET-centres), whose staff are further qualified.

Political dialogue: The dissemination of the concept of lifelong learning is supported in policy dialogue through consultations and conferences, especially with the Department of Non-Formal Education of the Ministry of Education, with the inclusion of the regional partners. DVV International regularly organises exchange events with governmental as well as non-governmental, national and international institutions and organisations. 


An important partner of DVV International is the Department of Non-Formal Education in the Ministry of Education as well as its dependent, the Non-formal Education Development Centre, which is responsible for the preparation of curricula and the creation of teaching and learning materials. Also of importance is the cooperation with the Training Department of the Ministry. In its cooperation with GIZ, DVV International works with centres for integrated training. In work with Welthungerhilfe, a basic education project is being implemented in the province of Savannaketh.

DVV International is a member of the Education Sector Working Group, which advises the Ministry of Education and all major national and international donors on educational projects.

Contact in Laos

DVV International
Regional Office South-East Asia
Watnak Ngai Road No. 351/19
Thaphalanxay Village
P.O. Box 1215

Regional  Director South-East Asia:
Uwe Gartenschlaeger

Contact in Germany

Senior Desk Office South-East Asia:
Dr. Johann Heilmann

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