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07 July 2010, Dhaka. Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, founder and chairperson of BRAC, received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree today from the University of Bath for his outstanding contributions to social improvement.

The ceremony at Bath Abbey was presided over by university chancellor Lord Tugendhat and was preceded by a public procession of senior campus officers and academics.

Sir Fazle also received several honorary degrees including Doctor of Humane Letters from Yale University in 2007, Doctor of Laws from Columbia University in 2008 and Doctor of Letters from the University of Oxford in 2009.

 

Wednesday, 07 July 2010 18:00

BRAC and UNICEF aim for closer ties

08 July 2010, Dhaka. BRAC and UNICEF have collaborated on different projects over the years. To strengthen this tie further and work towards Bangladesh’s national goals both the organisations have decided to collaborate more frequently to address the impending issues of Bangladesh. The main focuses are education, child protection, health and nutrition, and water and environmental sanitation.

 

08 July 2010, Dhaka. An agriculture training centre is being constructed in Uganda. The centre will be used to carry out agriculture research and experimentation at BRAC’s Nakaseke farm. The centre will include residential facilities. The training centre is expected to be completed within 6 months.

07 July 2010, Dhaka. A total of 79 children with special needs (CSN) from BRAC schools in five districts participated and won 101 prizes in a divisional sports competition, organised by the National Association of Sports for Persons with Disabilities (NASPD).

BRAC’s CSN unit facilitated the students’ participation to promote their social right and boost their self-confidence.

About 24 organisations took part in the Divisional Sports Competition for People with Disabilities.

 

07 July 2010, Dhaka. A total of 79 children with special needs (CSN) from BRAC schools in five districts participated and won 101 prizes in a divisional sports competition, organised by the National Association of Sports for Persons with Disabilities (NASPD).

BRAC’s CSN unit facilitated the students’ participation to promote their social right and boost their self-confidence.

About 24 organisations took part in the Divisional Sports Competition for People with Disabilities.

30 June 2010, Dhaka. BRAC and the European Union (EU) signed a Euro 5 million (BDT 400 million) agreement today for "Restoring socio-economic stability and strengthening community resilience in areas affected by cyclone AILA".  The EU support will help link the relief phase with the longer term reconstruction and development of the affected areas. 

 

The signatories were Dr Stefan Frowein, Head of the EU Delegation to Bangladesh and Dr. Mahabub Hossain, Executive Director of BRAC.  

The EU support, being made available under its Instrument for Stability, will provide much-needed interventions to promote socio-economic stability and to strengthen the economic and physical resilience and protection of communities against future natural disasters.  Emergency support of Euro 9 million (BDT 720 million was provided earlier to AILA victims under ECHO. With this support EU continues to meet its responsibilities as a major donor during the post-AILA recovery period.

BRAC, which has been working continuously in the affected areas, will target its interventions to support poor small farmers and fishers, van pullers, small traders, homestead owners and landless day labourers over the next 18 months.

In comments made during the ceremony, Dr. Frowein said that "This additional support underlines the solidarity which the European Union has expressed with the government and the people of Bangladesh in the wake of this terrible natural disaster." and referred to the agreement with BRAC as "a competent partnership".

Dr. Hossain, in his speech, thanked EU for supporting the rehabilitation of AILA victims and noted with satisfaction the trust and confidence that BRAC had been able to earn from the EU through the effective implementation of a similar project for SIDR victims.  BRAC, he said, was fully committed to serving the AILA affected people with the same efficiency and zeal.

The overall objective of the programme is to contribute to stability and rehabilitation in the coastal areas of south-western Bangladesh that were devastated and damaged by cyclone AILA.

 

 

22 June 2010, Dhaka. BRAC Founder and Chairperson Sir Fazle Hasan Abed visited Afghanistan for a short trip (June 18th – June 21st) to get an up close view of BRAC’s progress there.

Sir Fazle was accompanied by other high officials of BRAC in the trip namely Muhammad A. (Rumee) Ali- Managing Director, BRAC Enterprise and Investments, Md. Aminul Alam- Executive Director, BRAC International Programmes and Md. Salauddin Imam-Director, BRAC Bank incorporate Afghanistan.

The Chairperson met with senior BRAC Afghanistan Staff and got briefed about the current activities of BRAC in Afghanistan. The Chairperson talked to each Programme Managers individually about the relevant programme activities and provided valuable suggestions for the improvement and future directions of the programmes.

Sir Fazle emphasised on reducing maternal mortality and on increasing the coverage of immunization in Afghanistan. He also spoke about establishing resident schools for girls and introducing the Targeting Ultra Poor Programme in Afghanistan. Sir Fazle further added that a BRAC Afghanistan Governing Body needs to be formed which would consist of highly distinguished professionals and elite social personalities who will bring their diverse skills and experience to the governance of BRAC Afghanistan.

The Chairperson also attended the Board meeting of BRAC Bank-Afghanistan.

Two receptions were also arranged in honour of the Chairperson being knighted. Among the guests Ministers and Deputy Ministers of the Afghan Government, embassy officials, civil society personalities, bank officials, Afghanistan Chamber & Commerce and donors attended the receptions.

 

Tuesday, 08 June 2010 18:00

BRAC contributes for fire victims

09 June 2010, Dhaka. BRAC has contributed BDT (Bangladeshi Taka) 30 lakh to the Prime Minister’s rehabilitation fund for the victims of the Neemtoli fire. BDT 10 lakh was donated by BRAC staff while the remaining 20 lakh were contributed from the organisation’s own funds.

The BRAC family joins the nation in praying for the departed souls, and commits to helping the families of the victims overcome this tragedy.

Tuesday, 08 June 2010 18:00

BRAC contributes for fire victims

09 June 2010, Dhaka. BRAC has contributed BDT (Bangladeshi Taka) 30 lakh to the Prime Minister’s rehabilitation fund for the victims of the Neemtoli fire. BDT 10 lakh was donated by BRAC staff while the remaining 20 lakh were contributed from the organisation’s own funds.

The BRAC family joins the nation in praying for the departed souls, and commits to helping the families of the victims overcome this tragedy.

06 June 2010, Dhaka. BRAC’s Agricultural Research and Development Centre has been assessing the performance of early maturing Vietnamese and the NERICA (African) varieties of rice at its Gazipur farm.

 

 

BRAC experiments with fast-growing, high-yielding rice varieties

Dr. Mahabub Hossain, BRAC Executive Director and BRAC Agriculture Researchers visit
90 days old plant in Gazipur
 


The BRAC experiment shows that the Vietnamese varieties (OM576 and AF996) perform better with regard to maturity and yield than the African varieties (see Table).

“We are excited with the superior performance of two Vietnamese varieties as potential short maturity variety for the aus season,” BRAC Executive Director Mahbub Hossain said in June. “They gave yields of 5.6 to 5.8 tons per hectare compared to 4.4 t/ha for BRRI Dhan 28 and matured in 95 days. Next year, we shall conduct this trial at different locations in Bangladesh,” he added.

Duration & Yield of 6 rice varieties
    
Variety Name     Duration(Days)     Yield(tons/ha)
OM576     95     5.8
AF996     95     5.57
OM1490     97     5.36
OM2718     97     5.11
OM4498     97     5.5
BRRI Dhan28     96     4.37
          
Table of the comparative yield of NERICA and Vietnamese varieties, and the Bangladesh check, BRRI Dhan 28, grown at BRAC Gazipur farm.

The fast-growing, high-yielding varieties could help Bangladesh achieve self-sufficiency in rice production. The NERICA varieties, which also resist pests and tolerate droughts and infertile soils better, can help improve food security in drier areas of the country.