Our Story

In 2000, Village Focus International was the first international NGO to be founded in Laos. We were determined to operate an organization led by Lao professionals to address challenges faced by rural communities in their country. We began with eight Lao staff members and one expat. Seventeen years later we employ 55 full-time staff and more than 40 volunteers, with nearly 100 percent of our staff Lao (see our current staff in the above photo). We work across multiple Lao provinces and operate two human trafficking shelters, a border transit center for trafficking survivors, and a 40-hectare agricultural training facility for local farmers.

VFI is an international NGO with an exclusively local mission. We use the overwhelming majority of our funds in-country and do not support offices and staff abroad, which helps us deepen our local focus and empower local people. Our work has earned us recognition as the leader in Laos in the fight against human trafficking and for land and natural resource rights. VFI partners closely with the Lao government, international and domestic NGOs, the private sector, and local communities to strengthen Lao villages.

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Phonsavanh Tai village, Sisattanak district, Vientiane capital, Lao PDR.