26 January 2015
24 March 2015
7 April 2015
On 18 May 2015, the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) and BRAC's community road safety programme signed an agreement to pilot a two year long road safety awareness programme in the upazillas of Teknaf and Ukhyia in Cox's Bazar and Sreepur and Kapashia in Gazipur. This endeavour is a component of LGED's Second Rural Transport Improvement Project (RTIP-II) which is funded by the World Bank.
As per the World Health Organization, 18,000 Bangladeshis lose their lives every year due to road crashes costing the country around USD 1,000 million in losses. Of that number, children (under 15) fatality accounts for 11 per cent. Road crashes directly affect the poor as they are pushed into poverty, which ultimately hinders the country's development.
In this background, BRAC with support from LGED will implement the Community Road Safety Program which is a bottom up approach to reducing road crashes and casualties. The programme will target community residents comprising of students, teachers, hawkers, shopkeepers and drivers of non-motorised and motorised vehicles. The interventions will hinge on a participatory and holistic approach towards the involved communities. It is designed so as to expand their understanding of safe use of roads, identify road safety problems in their communities, formulating an action plan for solutions and implement it.
During the first 18 months (Phase I), BRAC will distribute various communication materials amongst the residents of the communities (students, teachers and general public), strengthen capacities of LGED community staff, Local Government Institutions and local NGOs, instill vigilance in drivers for improved awareness in accident-prone zones (areas with concentration of pedestrian activities). Phase II of the project will be enacted after a successful completion of the first that will also last for 18 months.
BRAC-Maya partnership launched their enhanced website and mobile app today at an official ceremony in Dhaka. maya.com.bd is the first website of its kind in Bangladesh with an aim to connect women with the information they are looking for, when they are looking for it.
With the support of Australian government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and UK Aid from the British Government, BRAC embarked on its collaborative work with Maya. BRAC-Maya partnership showcases a unique public-private initiative, working with the common goal of women's empowerment and gender justice. The Australian High Commissioner His Excellency Mr Greg Wilcock hosted the launching ceremony at his Gulshan residence alongside BRAC’s other strategic partner, the UK.
At the event, BRAC-Maya presented two of its products - the newly revamped BRAC-Maya site with localised content on women's workplace environment, health, legal and social issues and mobile platform based question-answer app, ‘Maya Apa’, the first of its kind in Bangladesh.
At the launching ceremony Australian High Commissioner His Excellency Greg Wilcock said, “Australia is a strong supporter of innovative ways of addressing poverty and empowering poor men and women. We are very proud to be associated with the Maya app, and the potential it has to help women and girls make more informed choices on health, legal and psychosocial issues”.
Sheepa Hafiza, Director, BRAC Gender Justice and Diversity said,“We expect this ground breaking project will bring rapid changes in bridging digital divide in Bangladesh between classes, locality and sex. By leveraging the power of information through web and the app , it will help women to take their own decision about the issues which are mostly untold and hidden like an ice berg, but extremely important for survival and to be powerful.”
Ivy H Russell, founder of Maya, added, “We are excited to launch the revamped maya.com.bd website which has more user friendly features and most importantly, fully integrated with our Maya Apa app. We are motivated to continue innovating with the Maya Apa app. Our mission is to connect women to the knowledge they are looking for through easily available technology when they are looking for it. Our website and app aim to bridge the digital divide by providing information to women and empowering women of all walks of life in Bangladesh. May Apa app is available on Google Play Store for immediate download and usage”.
Migration Programme, BRAC started two national human rights and migrant workers training for the government officials specially the District Employment and Manpower Officials on 15 -16 April 2015 and on 19 - 20 April 2015 at the conference room of BRAC Centre Inn, Dhaka. The training participants are the representatives from concerned ministries and district employment and manpower officials.
The training is covering the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), UN Convention 1990 on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, Constitution of Bangladesh, Overseas Employment and Migrants Act 2013, gender and other important national and international instruments for protecting migrants' rights. We believe the training will help the government officials to protect the migrants' rights at the district level.
In 2011, Government of Bangladesh has ratified International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families and in 2013, Bangladesh also enacted Overseas Employment and Migrants Act 2013.
Mr Khandaker Md Iftekhar Haider, Secretary, Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment will present as the Chief Guest, Begum Shamsun Nahar, Director General, Bureau of Manpower, Employment and Training will present as a chair. Ms Sheepa Hafiza, Gender Justice and Diversity and Migration Programme will moderate the closing ceremony on 20 April 2015.