The description here considers the map of the country in four geometric regions. Red-marked areas show our long-term presence, which is for 10 years by policy and practice. We strongly believe in empowering the communities. And to that end we’ve found no better alternative than to work through long-term involvement we call LRP (Local Rights Programme) carried out in partnership with non-govt. organisations working in the communities. At the core of our work is our engagement with more than 20 thousand children, who throng around 450 Child Spaces for education and emergency health support. Encouraging children to continue schooling, practise creative and sporty means of recreation are common to all the following regions. Elderly education is also prevalent across the country in a world-famous innovative approach known as ‘Reflect’.
SOUTH-EAST: In Chittagong, the issues we address are disability, health hazards, drugs intake and poor hygiene condition among inhabitants of sub-urban slums. Child labour is a major problem that we protest. ActionAid engages people (who have physical challenges) in livelihood activities and aware communities for an inclusive society. Noakhali has numerous inhabitants who are internally displaced due to river erosion. This community, similar to Potuakhali, also sees natural disasters like flood and cyclone. Our work mostly focuses on long-term rehabilitation activities unlike Bandarban where our focus is diversity issues, water-sanitation and health safety from diseases common in hilly tracts.
SOUTH-WEST: Faridpur has sex worker community where children suffer from social taboos. Besides our focus on introducing and habituating the people with alternative means of earning, we work to ensure rights of these children as in Chudanga, where protecting rights of women is our mandate. In Jhenaidah most of our work involves caring for the people facing physical challenges through therapy, assistive devices etc. whereas in Satkhira, as in Jessore, we engage with communities locally deemed ‘minor’ in terms of religious sect. Protecting their human-rights through awareness and capacity building is ideally common to what we do in Borguna and Khulna – districts prone to natural disasters and salinity.
NORTH-WEST: Addressed as the hunger-prone region of the country, most of our work here either build on or ends in ensuring food rights of the people. Flood is also a common phenomenon that allows only one crop a year leading to food shortage and malnutrition. Kurigram also has river erosion and early marriage issues. Joypurhat’s indigenous communities are deprived from government’s safety-net – therefore alternative income-generating activities are introduced in disaster-prone Lalmonirhat and Sirajgonj, and hunger-prone Rajshahi with Nilphamari. The communities in Pabna and Kushtia are remote in terms of availability of safety-net. They also lack in enough income opportunities, as in Gaibandha, and as such we introduce to people alternative means of livelihood.
If you would like to know about our short-term engagements of varying lengths and diverse focuses, please read on: