NABIC with the help of Brotee, a Dhaka based NGO, has undertaken a comprehensive rehabilitation project in cyclone Sidr affect area of Shatkhira. Brotee’s approach to rural development has been on the principles of partnership rather than Patron – Client or Benefactor – Beneficiary relationship. It is also based on the principle that local resources have to be used and local employment have to be generated, (1) to contain the migration to the cities (mainly after Sidr & Aila) & (2) to develop villages as a business hub for the poor and by the poor for their livelihood. This means the poorest category of the population must be organized and brought into the fold of cooperatives so that capital is formed in the hands of the poor and small investment initiatives are taken by the poor. Through a process of collective savings, investment and business this marginal community becomes ‘collective’ entrepreneur, a village financing institution. Thus it becomes self operational and sustainable. This approach results in the following:
It brings all poor women into economic activation through the women’s cooperatives.
Since every cooperative acquires some savings, it is able to make an equity contribution in any business plan.
This enables the total ‘poor’ population to earn better income and even become self employed. For many they are able to regain their lost livelihood.
These cooperatives become village financing institutions of the poor, by the poor and for the poor.
To date, NABIC has provided a fund of $165,000 to this project.This project is located in a remote area named Dumuria near Shundarban. At first glance, one can see lack of civilized facilities in the area. The Sidr really left these people devastated and not much done for the normal life style of the local inhabitants. So far Brotee worked hard to establish 8 Ponds for drinking water with filter system for the local people. They have small committees for each pond for maintenance. The pond water project is completed. Now the main focus is to build school for the children. There is only one primary school in this area and there are 100s of kids without any school facilities. The project is supporting about 150 kids with monthly 1050 taka giving cash and providing other support like school supply and doctor visit. The youth are helping to run the primary schools. The youths are also saving money to grow cooperative committees (Shomobai shomiti) for different developmental works.