Amina, Jahanara, Baltidevi, Fatima, Sultana, Marima and many more women have brought themselves and their families out of extreme poverty because of the relentless efforts of one organization. Sulka Sarkar, Ratnidevi, Iman Fatima, Raziya and many more are realizing their dream career because of the efforts of the same organization. The organization doing this splendid work is BRAC.
BRAC is a developmental organization dedicated to alleviating poverty by empowering the poor. Working on the values of innovation, integrity, inclusiveness and effectiveness BRAC has reached out to more than 10 million people worldwide.
One of the first few organizations to undertake poverty elimination in Bangladesh, BRAC was born with the mission of empowering people and communities in situations of poverty, illiteracy, disease and social injustice. BRAC looks into comprehensive development and thus it functions in areas of agriculture, food security, economic development, microfinance, education, community empowerment, environment, health, gender justice, human rights, legal aid services, social communication, advocacy, social enterprises, training, technical assistance, and socially responsible investments. With its wide spread presence in more than 10 countries, BRAC is fast growing to become one of the largest developmental organizations.
BRAC operates a number of social enterprises in fields of agriculture, handicraft etc, which not only facilitate development but also bring self sufficiency to BRAC. BRAC also has a number of international and national funding agencies which support all its endeavors.
To ensure consistent learning and development, BRAC has established training centers, research and monitoring systems and developed financial checks and balances. The major themes which are at the heart of all activities of BRAC are gender equality, protecting the environment and inclusiveness. The four major strengths on which BRAC functions, are thinking local acting global, increasing self-reliance, reaching unprecedented scale and proven track record.
Fazle Hasan Abed, founder and chairperson of BRAC was enjoying a comfortable life as a professional accountant in Shell foundation, when the Bangladesh war of independence took place. Distressed by the mayhem and poverty that was left behind by the war; he formed Bangladesh Rehabilitation Assistance Committee (BRAC) in 1971. In 1973, BRAC was renamed and came to be known as Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee. Since then BRAC has been continuously working for the betterment of people in different parts of the world, concentrating its efforts on empowering the poor.
Operating in 10 different countries in three major continents; Asia, Africa & America; BRAC has reached out to more than 110 million people round the globe. Its tuberculosis programme has reached about 80 million people, it has given micro loans to more than 8 million women, it has trained 84000 community health promoters, and it has also started 4000 community schools with focus on educating the girl child.
As we can see, BRAC is now going ahead to realize it’s vision of creating a world which is free from all forms of exploitation & discrimination and where everyone has the opportunity to realize their potential.