THP-Bangladesh Ensures Stronger Governance, Partnerships and Goals for Community Development
Update to the Global Board
During this reporting period, THP-Bangladesh made great progress in ensuring good governance in the 80 Union Parishads (UPs) identified as priority Unions. Increasingly, program interventions are focused on transparency and accountability of UPs, and several UPs, with the support and guidance of THP and participation of Ward Action Teams, have for the first time ever drafted five-year strategic plans, mapping out clear goals for community development. Additionally for the first time, all 80 of the priority unions held planned Ward Shava meetings.
THP-Bangladesh has strengthened fruitful partnerships with the Australia High Commission, BRAC, the World Bank and the British Council, all of which forward its work to support rural people to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in their Unions, particularly through the development of good governance and women and youth leaders.
This reporting period there were several national-level meetings coordinated by THP-Bangladesh. National Girl Child Advocacy Day was celebrated, the 4th National Convention of the Unleashed Women Network, and the 15th National Youth Conference was also held for the first time in three years.
- Ward Shava Meetings in All 80 Priority Unions. Through The Hunger Project’s work to strengthen the transparency and accountability mechanisms of Union Parishads (UPs), for the first time it has been observed that 100% of Ward Shava meetings have taken place in all 80 priority unions following legislative rules. Ward Shava plays a significant role as a participatory platform for prioritizing local issues and has become a source of interaction and sharing among local government representatives, development workers and the general community.
- 4th National Convention of The Enlightened Women Network (Bikoshito Nari Network – BNN). was held in Dhaka. The gathering brought together nearly 1,500 women leaders from all around the country.
- International Girl Child Day. There were more than 500 events organized around the country with more than 60,000 participants. Events were held in collaboration with 56 members of the Bangladesh NGO Network (BNN).
- Cloud-based Data System. THP-Bangladesh has initiated the use of cloud-based data preservation and sharing systems in addition to the existing teleconferencing among the country headquarters and the ten regional offices.
- Improved Communications and New Media. THP-Bangladesh has launched a new and improved website (http://thpbd.org/) along with a Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/THPBangladesh) where up-to-date news on advocacy campaigns as well as progress on programs can be shared with stakeholders.
- BRAC Extends Partnership for Creating MDG Unions. In 2010, The Hunger Project and BRAC entered into a partnership for creating MDG Unions in four unions of Mymonsingh District. This was a one-year pilot project that ended July 2011. Based on the success and performance of this project, the life of the project has been extended for one additional year by BRAC.
- Violence Against Women Advocacy Efforts. THP Bangladesh and National Girl Child Advocacy Forum organized a Human Chain (pictured right) in front of the National Press Club raising a collective voice to bring the rapists of a young girl child and their perpetrators justice. More than 400 representatives of 37 organizations, institutions and the civil society participated in the assembly and expressed their solidarity for an end to violence against women.
- Successful Investor Trips. Two external investor teams from Australia and the US visited during this reporting period to learn about THP’s rural interventions in Mymensing, Khulna and Bagherhat. During their visit, THP staff, community partners and animators presented the power of collective initiatives focused on achievement of MDGs by the community people. Other key themes included: impact of volunteer led initiatives; focus on nutrition and health; and partnerships with communities and UP members.