05 June 2012, Dhaka. “BRAC will continue to be a learning organisation and work with government in a complementing its capacity” -Speakers vow at the annual report launching.
BRAC, in its 40th anniversary annual report launch, paid rich tributes to the social innovators of the organization and vowed to continue to be a learning organization. BRAC’s Executive Director Dr. Mahabub Hossain officially launched the 2011 Annual Report today at a discussion aimed at upcoming development priorities in the national agenda and BRAC’s role in it. Present during the occasion was Managing Director of BRAC Enterprises & Investments Muhammad A. (Rumee) Ali, BRAC group’s CFO S.N. Kairy, BRAC International’s Deputy Executive Director Faruque Ahmed, Director of Communications Asif Saleh and all the directors of BRAC’s various programmes.
Dr. Mahabub Hossain said “Even though we have passed 40 years, we still feel there is a lot more to learn. We strive to remain youthful through continues learning. We have always wanted to be self reliant, hence even though at the initial stage, we were 100% donor reliant, it has now reduced to a mere 30%. We plan to become 100% self reliant when Bangladesh emerges as a middle income country in the coming future”.
The Managing Director of BRAC Enterprises & Investments expressed that, “...the main driving force of BRAC businesses is social responsibility. This is engraved in our DNA. Our businesses define Social Responsibility in the best way”.
Asif Saleh, Director of Communications, presented a photo essay on portraying some of the stories of people whose lives have changed through BRAC’s various interventions. S.M. Hashmee, director of BRAC Development Institute, moderated the open discussion session, with participation from the civil society, government officials and BRAC’s senior officials.
In the discussion Khushi Kabir, Coordinator of Nijera Kori, highlighted that BRAC could perhaps do better in interlinking their programmes. Director General of Disaster Management Bureau, Ahsan Zakir shares his opinion, “It will be difficult for the government to tackle the situation on its own if there is ever a massive disaster situation in the country. Hence collaborating with BRAC we are working to build a team of 62,000 urban volunteers who will be stationed in different wards, and undertake emergency relief programmes whenever needed. BRAC has committed to provide 1000 volunteers around Dhaka city. I wholeheartedly thank BRAC for assisting the Government in such an initiative.
Economic development, health, education, sanitation, gender, justice and social awareness programmes are some of the areas of BRAC where BRAC, alongside the government’s efforts, have worked. Two initiatives can be exemplified to measure the effectiveness of such correlation. As an added measure to the success of National Tuberculosis Control Board in combating tuberculosis epidemic throughout the country, BRAC has ensured the support of its ninety-thousand field level workers to disseminate the programme’s objectives to the grass-root people. According to the government’s policy and initiative, BRAC has guaranteed the necessary services to almost 9.3 million people across the country. Almost one million people in 42 upazillas, and 297 upazillas, have received successful treatment against the disease. The margin set for identified (70%) and cured (85%) has been well over exceeded under this program. The current statistics show, the rate for identified is 72% and that of cured is 93%, and this proves the immense success of such cooperative programmes.
The Government of Bangladesh and BRAC has been jointly working for the development of the tenant farmers. Bangladesh Bank has given a loan of BDT 500,000,000 to BRAC for providing necessary financial support to these tenant farmers. They are provided with adequate capital and technological support for their sustainable development.
Following the National policy, the Government continues to commence various programmes on its own or with support of other organizations. The effective relationship that the Government and BRAC shares, is a thriving example of such productive ventures.
The Annual Report stated that BRAC’s service is now reaching to 113 million of our clients through our more than 90,000 workers. Last year, the total expenditure for BRAC was USD 572 million. BRAC, the largest NGO in Bangladesh, is operating 37,452 pre-primary and primary schools across the country. From these schools, over 92 lakh, 80,000 disadvantaged children have graduated. In the health sector mentioned in the annual report, over 91,000 shasthaya shebikas are under our employ, and they have provided pre-natal care to 44,000 pregnant women, and ante-natal care to 8 lakh 60,000 mothers. Aside from that, they have identified malaria in 3 lakh 13,513 patients, and tuberculosis treatment has been given to 4 lakh 64,334 patients. Under our TUP programme, 3 lakh, 70,300 ultra-poor women have received various assets from BRAC. Some of these assets include livestock and poultry, land, etc.
This year, BRAC celebrated its 40th anniversary. Practical education, village organisations, oral saline preparation training, education for drop-out children, tuberculosis treatment, and loans for tenant farmers etc are some of the innovations that BRAC has made in the last forty years.