12.9% of Bangladesh’s population lives in extreme poverty. In the wetland (haor) areas, 3 out of every 10 people live below the lower poverty line.
We are the pioneers of the global Graduation approach, and are working towards eliminating ultra poverty completely from Bangladesh by 2030.
The Graduation approach blends together elements of livelihoods, social protection, financial inclusion and social integration. Multi-dimensional support addresses immediate needs of participants using grants, interest-free loans and asset transfers, as well as longterm investments in life skills and technical skills training, enterprise development, positive behaviour change, savings and financial planning.
Our Integrated Development Programme offer 75% of the total population in hard-to-reach areas such as wetlands (haor), riverine islands (char) and indigenous populations living in plain lands with a one-stop point of access to all of BRAC’s development interventions, including the Graduation approach.
We are engaging with the Government to affect favourable changes to its social safety net programmes. Internationally, we are promoting adoption of the Graduation approach and continue to support other countries and organisations to adapt the model in different contexts.
ALSO IN BANGLADESH’S HARD-TO-REACH AREAS:
KUMARI JOYONTI MOHONTO
My father fractured his left arm a few years back which left him unemployed for months. He got a few jobs but they lasted only a day or two. My mother took up part-time maid jobs, and when there was nothing else she made mats with her sister-in-law. She was always busy during the day, but I heard her cry many nights - especially those ones when we had not been able to eat much, or when rain came through the roof.
Both my parents always made sure that Sumon and I received proper education. They never compromised over school.
My brother Sumon drove a rickshaw van from the eighth grade. He supported himself and gave my mother whatever remained. He worked this way until he was done with his HSC. Now he is living in Dhaka, studying in college while teaching part time.
We never owned any land or home. We always lived with others. I was never asked to contribute, but I always did household chores and took care of the cattle.
My mother joining the TUP programme was a kickstart in many ways. We bought cows, and a large amount of our income now comes from selling their milk.
We bought a piece of land and, one year ago, started building the house we now live in. Our first house.
I want to be a teacher when I grow up. I haven’t decided what I am going to teach but I will be a provider for my family. Our childhood was always held together by my mother. This is a major issuein rural areas where women working is not accepted, but I watched my mother handle every backlash - and now we have a house. My every footstep was, and shall always be, paved by the ones left by her. I will have a career that will make her proud.