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 6 May 2012, Dhaka — Knight Commander, Sir Fazle Hasan Abed and Nobel Laureate, Muhammad Yunus, have been marked as the creators of the world’s two best organizations – BRAC and Grameen Bank – by the visiting US secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton. In an early morning 9 o’clock meeting on 6 May 2012, at the Gulshan Residence of the US ambassador of Bangladesh, Dan W Mozena; Sir Fazle and Dr. Yunus met with Secretary Clinton for an hour long discussion which was primarily focused on the development of Bangladesh and women’s rights and empowerment.

Various other national and regional issues were also brought into focus which included feasible solutions to the electricity crisis, the current political situation, mobile phone technology usage in disseminating developmental services, the country’s poverty reduction capacity, youth empowerment, development success achieved so far in Bangladesh and its enduring potential. The two visionaries of Bangladesh have requested the continued support and assistance from the US in regard to these issues.

During the meeting, Secretary Clinton expressed her deep condolences to the family and friends of Mohammad Mohiuddin, BRAC’s Area Manger in the western province of Ghor, Afghanistan, who died in an armed attack on 3rd May 2012. She praised and appreciated the micro credit system, giving due credit to BRAC and Grameen Bank for the sustainable progress in the social structure of Bangladesh. She expressed her gratitude to both of them for their commitment and hard work towards such development work.

For a developing nation like Bangladesh, she has ensured continued US assistance for the betterment of humanity. Secretary Clinton said that she has known Sir Fazle and Dr. Yunus for almost 25 years and honours them as “national treasures” with the hope that the Government will also treat them accordingly.

06 May 2012, Dhaka. Mohammed Mohiuddin (41), a Bangladeshi development specialist working for BRAC Afghanistan, who was tragically killed by armed miscreants in Afghanistan last Thursday, has been laid to rest today at his family graveyard in Fulbaria of Mymensingh district. A team of senior BRAC officials, including the Chief Financial Officer of BRAC Group S N Kairy and Directors Shabbir Ahmed Chowdhury and Najmul Hossain, attended the burial. The team received Mohiuddin’s body, which was flown back to Dhaka from Kabul earlier in the morning, at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport and escorted it to his village in Fulbaria. Later the BRAC officials attended Mohiuddin’s namaz-e-janaja along with the upazila Chairman Anwar Kabir, government officials, local elites and people in the community.

Speaking on behalf of BRAC, Kairy said, ‘Nothing can truly recompense the family for the loss of their loved one. Yet BRAC will continue to do everything possible to provide support to the family, starting with a compensation of Tk. 10,00,000 in addition to whatever employee benefits that Mohiuddin’s family is entitled to.’ He also said that BRAC is reviewing its strategic plans for Afghanistan and has stopped deploying Bangladeshi staff in risky areas of Afghanistan. BRAC's staffs are our biggest asset and we will take every measure to protect them’, he said. BRAC will wait for the results of the investigations before drawing further conclusions in relation to the incident of killing.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton conveyed her condolences at the tragic death of Mohiuddin to Sir Fazle Hasan Abed during her meeting with the BRAC Founder in Dhaka on Sunday morning. The Secretary of State also appreciated BRAC’s development efforts in Afghanistan.

Mohiuddin served BRAC for 14 years as a sector specialist in agriculture. He was posted at BRAC Afghanistan since 2009 in the community based livelihood improvement project in the Ghor Province in Western Afghanistan.
 

06 May 2012, Dhaka. Mohammed Mohiuddin (41), a Bangladeshi development specialist working for BRAC Afghanistan, who was tragically killed by armed miscreants in Afghanistan last Thursday, has been laid to rest today at his family graveyard in Fulbaria of Mymensingh district. A team of senior BRAC officials, including the Chief Financial Officer of BRAC Group S N Kairy and Directors Shabbir Ahmed Chowdhury and Najmul Hossain, attended the burial. The team received Mohiuddin’s body, which was flown back to Dhaka from Kabul earlier in the morning, at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport and escorted it to his village in Fulbaria. Later the BRAC officials attended Mohiuddin’s namaz-e-janaja along with the upazila Chairman Anwar Kabir, government officials, local elites and people in the community.

Speaking on behalf of BRAC, Kairy said, ‘Nothing can truly recompense the family for the loss of their loved one. Yet BRAC will continue to do everything possible to provide support to the family, starting with a compensation of Tk. 10,00,000 in addition to whatever employee benefits that Mohiuddin’s family is entitled to.’ He also said that BRAC is reviewing its strategic plans for Afghanistan and has stopped deploying Bangladeshi staff in risky areas of Afghanistan. BRAC's staffs are our biggest asset and we will take every measure to protect them’, he said. BRAC will wait for the results of the investigations before drawing further conclusions in relation to the incident of killing.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton conveyed her condolences at the tragic death of Mohiuddin to Sir Fazle Hasan Abed during her meeting with the BRAC Founder in Dhaka on Sunday morning. The Secretary of State also appreciated BRAC’s development efforts in Afghanistan.

Mohiuddin served BRAC for 14 years as a sector specialist in agriculture. He was posted at BRAC Afghanistan since 2009 in the community based livelihood improvement project in the Ghor Province in Western Afghanistan.
 

Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder and Chairperson of BRAC and BRAC International, expressed his profound shock and grief at the untimely death of Md. Mohiuddin, a Bangladeshi BRAC staff working in Afghanistan.

Sir Fazle said, “I join Mohiuddin’s family in this moment of grief. I wish them the strength and courage to help them pass through this difficult time. Mohiuddin demonstrated great bravery and dedication in serving humanity by working closely with the Afghan communities. I know that this is an irreparable loss, but BRAC will do everything possible to provide support to his family.

This tragedy highlights the commitment of our staff including Bangladeshi development experts who take significant risks to work for the underprivileged people in different parts of the world. BRAC will continue to work in difficult areas of Afghanistan, but with the deteriorating security situation we are acting with great urgency to review our plans to ensure staff safety.”

4 May 2012, Dhaka. On Thursday, May 3, a group of four armed men broke into BRAC staff residence in the western province of Ghor, Afghanistan. We are deeply saddened to announce that the incident led to the tragic loss of a life of one of our own.

BRAC leadership wishes to extend sincere and heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of our Area Manager, Mohammad Mohiuddin. He was 41 years old and left behind a wife and two children in Fulbaria, Mymensingh. We are doing everything we can to assist his family during this difficult time. Mohiuddin served with BRAC for 14 years as a sector specialist in Agriculture. He was working at BRAC Afghanistan since 2009 and helped many Afghan families improve their lives through his work in community based livelihood improvement project in Ghor. He recently started working for a new project on water management which has a partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture & Livestock in Afghanistan.

BRAC has been working in Afghanistan since 2002. With 3,000 staff including 152 Bangladeshi, the organization has a direct programme presence in 23 provinces and through partnership with local NGOs in the remaining 11 provinces, including the ones where insecurity has been on the rise in recent times. BRAC is the largest development organization in Afghanistan serving 29.8 million poor, with a focus on women and girls to help them come out of poverty and lead a healthier and more empowered life.

We are closely monitoring developments in Afghanistan with great concern as the overall security situation in the country is increasingly deteriorating. Safeguarding the interests and well-being of the Bangladeshi and Afghan staff deployed in areas where insecurity is rising, remains our top priority.

Friday, 27 April 2012 18:00

Observation of World Malaria Day 2012


28 April 2012, Dhaka. World Malaria Day was observed on April 25, 2012 by BRAC Health Programme (BHP) and BRAC Advocacy for Social Change. This event was a joint initiative of BRAC and National Malaria Control Program (NMCP).The daylong programme included rally and Discussion Meeting where Government official and representatives from non Government organisations participated.  The rally, started from National Museum and continued to Bangla Academi ; was followed by a discussion meeting at Ruposhi Bangla Hotel where Prof. A. F. M. Ruhal Haque M.P, Minister, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare was present as chief guest. Dr. Captain (Retd.) Mozibur Rahman Fakir M.P, State Minister, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Prof. (Dr.) Syed Modasser Ali, Adviser, Health & Family Welfare and Social Welfare Affairs Dr. Md. Humayun Kabir, Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Begum Akhtari Momtaj, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare were present as Special guests. The meeting was chaired by Prof. Dr. Md. Sefatullah, DG, Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS). Representatives from 21 NGOs, Journalists were present at the meeting.  Prof. Benazir Ahmed, Director, Disease Control, DGHS gave a presentation on the current situation of Malaria in Bangladesh highlighting treatment condition and future plan.   A theme song on malaria sung by renowned artist Samina Chowdhury was released on this occasion. A documentary on World Malaria Day observation was telecasted on April 27, 2012 at BTV containing interviews, rally, highlights of discussion meetings and message for public.

The global Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement continues to gain momentum today with the convening of 27 leaders committed to advancing the strength and security of nations by improving maternal and child nutrition. This influential group, appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to represent the many countries, organizations and sectors working to improve nutrition, will serve as strategic guides for this global Movement.

“Never before have so many leaders, from so many countries and fields, agreed to work together to improve nutrition,” said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. “The Scaling Up Nutrition Movement gives all of us, including the UN, an opportunity to support countries in their efforts to end hunger and malnutrition.”

The members of the Lead Group include Heads of State from countries that have prioritized efforts to scale up nutrition, as well as representatives of the donor, civil society, business and UN system organizations that are aligning resources to help SUN countries drive progress. Members of the Lead Group are listed below: additional Members may be invited to join later.

The Group’s role is to ensure that the countries at the heart of the Movement are supported as they work to create tangible and sustainable improvements in nutrition. In addition to providing strategic oversight, the Lead Group will help to mobilize support and strengthen both coordination and accountability within the Movement. Twenty-seven countries have chosen to join the SUN Movement so far, with more set to join in the coming months.

Scaling Up Nutrition, or SUN, is a global push for action and investment to improve maternal and child nutrition. Evidence shows that proper nutrition during the 1,000 days between a woman’s pregnancy and her child’s second birthday gives children a healthy start at life. Poor nutrition during this period leads to irreversible consequences such as stunted growth and impaired cognitive development.

Improving nutrition is a precondition to achieving goals of eradicating poverty and hunger, reducing child mortality, improving maternal health and combating disease—which all contribute to a stronger future for communities and nations.

“It is time to recognize nutritional status not only as a marker of progress in development, but also as a maker of progress – and a key to more sustainable development. We must invest now in programmes to prevent stunting or risk diminishing the impact of other investments in education, health and child protection,” said Anthony Lake, Executive Director of UNICEF, who has been appointed by Secretary- General Ban to chair the Lead Group.

SUN helps governments, civil society, businesses, development agencies, international organizations and foundations to synergize their support to communities as they reduce malnutrition – and demonstrate their results. By integrating solutions across sectors and creating new partnerships, SUN creates sustainable change and tangible results that no one programme, organization, business or government could achieve alone.

The diverse experience and expertise of the Lead Group reflect the core SUN principle that real progress can be made by engaging multiple stakeholders towards a common goal.

“This is a historic moment for nutrition,” said Dr. David Nabarro, Coordinator of the SUN Movement. “Today a group of world leaders pledges to work together to improve the nutrition of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable children. Their two-year commitment to SUN illustrates the urgency and priority that these leaders place on alleviating malnutrition, as well as a recognition of the incredible impact that improved nutrition could have on the future of both individuals and nations.”

Members of the Lead Group for the Scaling Up Nutrition Movement

SUN Countries

  • Mr. Armando Emílio Guebuza, President of Mozambique
  • Mr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President of Tanzania
  • Ms. Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of Bangladesh
  • Mr. Nahas Angula, Prime Minister of Namibia
  • Mr. Babu Ram Bhattarai, Prime Minister of Nepal
  • Ms. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Minister of Finance of Nigeria
  • Ms. Nina Sardjunani, Deputy Minister of Development Planning of Indonesia
  • Ms. Nadine Heredia, First Lady of Peru
  • Mr. Ibrahim Mayaki, CEO of NEPAD


Civil Society Organizations

  • Mr. Fazle Hasan Abed, Founder and Chairperson, BRAC
  • Mr. Tom Arnold , Chief Executive Officer, Concern Worldwide
  • Ms. Alessandra da Costa Lunas, Secretary-General, Confederation of Family Farmer
  • Organizations of the Extended Mercosur (COPROFAM)
  • Ms. Marie Pierre Allié, President, Médecins Sans Frontières France
  • Ms. Helene Gayle, President and CEO, CARE USA


Development Agencies

  • Ms. Beverley Oda, Minister of International Cooperation, Canada
  • Mr. Andris Piebalgs, Commissioner for Development Cooperation, EC
  • Mr. Bruno Le Maire, Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fishing, France
  • Mr. Rajiv Shah, Administrator, US Agency for International Development


Business

  • Ms. Vinita Bali Managing Director, Britannia Industries
  • Mr. Paul Polman, Chief Executive Officer, Unilever


International Organizations

  • Ms. Ertharin Cousin, Executive Director, World Food Programme and Representative of the United Nations Standing Committee on Nutrition
  • Ms. Tamar Manuelyan Atinc, Vice President, Human Development, The World Bank


Foundations and Alliances

  • Mr. Chris Elias, President, Global Development, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Mr. Jay Naidoo, Chair of the Board, Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition
  • Ms. Mary Robinson, Chair, Mary Robinson Foundation - Climate Justice


SUN Movement

  • Mr. Anthony Lake, Chair, Scaling Up Nutrition Movement Lead Group and Executive Director, UNICEF
  • Mr. David Nabarro, Coordinator, Scaling Up Nutrition Movement, and Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Food Security and Nutrition

 

Source: UNITED NATIONS

10 April 2012, Dhaka. In a unique event that highlights government and NGO partnership, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) is signed today between BRAC and the Directorate of Women Affairs. Under this MoU, the parties will work together to replicate the model of BRAC’s Adolescent Clubs in seven districts: Gopalganj,Sirajganj, Thakurgaon, Rangamati, Moulvibazar, Jhalokathi, and Chuadanga. The Government will be using this BRAC model, which has been replicated in Africa and currently has over 260,000 members in Bangladesh in establishing their own Adolescents Clubs to empower young women.

BRAC will provide technical assistance; prepare training modules, and other support materials that will play a crucial role in the implementation of this endeavour.

The MoU is signed by, Md. Ashraf Hossain, Director General, Directorate of Women Affairs and Dr Safiqul Islam Director, BRAC Education Programme. 

Executive Director Dr. Mahbub Hossain mentioned that NGOs shows innovative and effective path to implement a goal, but to bring out the positive impact in large scale government has the capability ; NGOs can work with government in root level and by working together synergic result will be produced. He believes that adolescent clubs will bring positive changes and uphold the gender parity in the society. 

Md. Ashraf Hossain, Director General, Directorate of Women Affairs mentioned that Government has adopted National Women Development Policy (NWDP). Their road map is to transform the society from patriarchy approach to gender equality. This signing ceremony will work as milestone towards their goal.

Director of Communications Asif Saleh, Deputy Director of Directorate of Women Affairs Zakia Yasmin Zoardar, Programme Coordinator of BRAC Education Programme Md. Monowar Hossain Khondakar, BRAC Adolescent Programme Manager Rashida Parveen were also present.

Currently BRAC runs more than 8,000 Adolescent Clubs for young women from underprivileged backgrounds. The clubs offer adolescents life skills based education- facilitated by their peers – that focus on different social and health related issues, such as reproductive health, sexual abuse, children’s rights, gender, HIV/AIDS, STI, eve teasing (verbal sexual abuse), child trafficking, substance abuse, violence, family planning, child marriage, dowry, and acid throwing. Kishori Kendros provide the opportunity for girls to learn valuable skills by offering Livelihood Training courses on tailoring, embroidery, journalism, poultry, livestock, and beauty care to empower individuals to become financially independent.

Research findings show how ADP – Adolescent Peer Organized Network (APON) course graduates become empowered in terms of participation in and control over decision making and in nurturing leadership qualities to be the agents of social change. The study also captured how the target groups’ attitudes towards early marriage, dowry, reproductive health knowledge, health seeking behaviour, knowledge on HIV/AIDS along with other STDs, awareness on social and gender perceptions vary from the general adolescents nationally.
 

Saturday, 08 September 2012 18:00

Daniel Ng wins BRAC's Innovation Competition

BRAC’s first-ever Facebook competition is officially over! Congratulations to our winner, Daniel Ng from the University of Virginia on his ‘Play’ Project– a community playground project with the objective of creating safe accessible spaces for underprivileged children to play.

“Wow, thank you so much for choosing me! I feel so honored and fortunate and excited to be able to work with such a renowned organization as BRAC,” says Daniel. “I had no expectations of winning since I knew I was competing against very qualified and remarkable people. I still can't believe I won.” Daniel is a freshmen who’s interested in studying Global Development and Statistics.

A special mention goes out to our runners up; Maya – a community empowerment project for women, and Amadeyr Cloud’s  digital content delivery project.

In January, we received over 40 submissions from around the world and finally narrowed it down to seven best innovations with potential to be implemented at BRAC. We convened several internal judging panels to make our final decision. The winner gets the unique opportunity to work with BRAC’s Social Innovation Lab in Bangladesh. We thank all our participants for their submissions and look forward to organizing similar projects in the future.

“This was our first attempt to organize a Facebook contest and the response was great! The quality of the submissions we received was very impressive,” stated Mr. Asif Saleh, BRAC’s Director of Communications and the Social Innovation Lab. “We look forward to having similar events in the future to not only foster innovation, but get people thinking more seriously about some of the social problems we face today.”

BRAC Haiti staff celebrate International Women's Day

For the first time, BRAC Haiti staff celebrated International Women’s Day on 8 March 2012. Local and international staff from the Country Office and the Limb & Brace Center started the day by attending a women’s forum hosted by the Ministry of Women’s Affairs. The theme of the forum was to ensure the voices of Haitian women are included in the country’s reconstruction, and to advocate for the active participation of women in reconstruction efforts. Women’s groups and community-based organizations from all over the country participated in the event, along with business and civic leaders, and politicians, including President Michel Martelly and his wife, First Lady Sophia Martelly.

In the afternoon, staff gathered in the Country Office, where Country Representative Rakibul Bari Khan presented the latest data on the challenges women face locally and globally. Senior Education Officer Doris Valcin shared information on the plight of adolescent girls based on her participation in BRAC’s Global Learning Meeting. Finally, Jackson Naudé, Logistics Officer, highlighted the important role women play in Haitian society. Staff also watched a clip from the documentary film Poto Mitan: Haitian Women Pillars of the Global Economy.

Following the presentations, all staff discussed how BRAC Haiti can improve upon its gender inclusion and equality efforts. From that discussion, three suggestions emerged:

  1. Improve efforts to recruit and retain women.
  2. Increase and encourage discussions about gender issues with program participants.
  3. Respect and support women in their roles in the office and at home.

Through the end of the year, BRAC Haiti will monitor its progress in supporting gender issues.

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