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Community Projects
 
Community Projects

BritBangla supports and works with community and charity organisations bringing awareness to issues affecting our community and focusing on women and children.


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Hashmot from Bangladesh
>Plan International
>Raynagor Girls Orphanage in Bangladesh
>Newham Asian Womens Project [NAWP]
>Mentoring
>Betar Bangla Radio
>Shadinata Trust


Plan International

The BritBangla Launch Event supported Plan International and continues to raise awareness for members to donate and sponsor children. With funds rasied BritBangla has sponsered a child, a young Bangladeshi girl. BritBangla hope to sponsor her until she is 16 years old and help her fulfil her dream to be teacher. If you wish to write, send a gift, visit her in Bangladesh or want to be kept updated on the Progress Report please contact BritBangla at: britbangla@britbangla.net

As part of your membership with BritBangla, you have a sponsored child in Bangladesh. On your behalf, we have been sponsoring for 6 years now.

So from time to time, we share with you communications and update on the child’s progress and learn about her community. Plan International work closely with the child and her family, who live in oneof the poorest areas in Bangladesh.

Via this child sponsorship, it’s a way for us to understand life in arural community such as Bangladesh and highlight the opportunity for you to help a community to develop a better life.

Many of you will recall your sponsored child ‘Amina’ (protecting her real name) is Muslim, lives in a village in Jagannathpur, Bangladesh with her mum, dad and one younger brother; and has recently turned 13 yrs old as her birthday was on 6th June. Hopefully, we will send her a little gift such as a school bag or colouring pens.

Our monthly contributions help to fund community projects that families are doing with Plan International to benefit the children in her area. The sponsorship helps to support her community development improvements long term and the resources required including staff support.

So how did we fundraise to sponsor her so far?
A while back two others and myself did the Women’s 5K Challenge to secure a few years sponsorship that runs out soon.

BritBangla would love to continue to support ‘Amina’ until the age of 16. If you can donate that would be great - please see our Just Giving donation link.

http://www.justgiving.com/BritBangla-Network-

Finally, if you are interested in keeping up to date on ‘Amina’, wish to send her a letter or a gift then email at: britbangla@britbangla.net

Plan, in collaboration with local people, helps build a brighter future for children by setting up long-term development projects in their communities. Plan provide the materials, skills and knowledge necessary for them to carry out the projects. More information can be found on their website: http://www.plan-uk.org/wherewework/asia/bangladesh/

Plan is working with communities in Bangladesh on many projects. Field staff and communities in Bangladesh have identified a pre-school teacher training programme.

There are a many reasons why Plan believes that this programme should be prioritised:

• One primary school teacher in Bangladesh is responsible for 63 students, which is the
worst ratio in the region.

• Bangladesh has the lowest student-teacher contact time in the world,
officially 2.5 hours per day. However actual contact time may be 2 hours or less
per day. Because of lack of facilities, teachers often take classes in shifts,
meaning that children only receive half the amount of lesson time.

• 40% of teachers in Bangladesh are not formally trained. Many teachers are
poorly trained, and can only offer an irrelevant curriculum. Rote learning, and rigid discipline are often the norm

• Poor child teacher ratio, low contact time, poor training and lack of
facilities require that teachers in Bangladesh need intensive training to cope
with the situation.

This will help -
1. Reduce drop out from schools
2. Prepare children for formal school
3. Motivate teachers to deliver well
4. Enhance quality of teaching

Be part of Plan and sponsor a child. Visit website: http://www.plan-uk.org

Plan UK, registered charity n.276035

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Hashmot from Bangladesh

BritBangla is working with Willing and Abel and determined to offer Hasmont a huge upgrade in his current life but we need your help.

As a young boy Hashmot earned a living as a fisherman working the network of rivers that cover the Sunderban region of southern Bangladesh. But one evening, as he lay asleep on the deck of his boat a Bengal tiger crept out of the mangroves and attacked him. He woke up four days later in hospital to find that doctors had performed enough primitive surgery to keep him alive but the experience had left him horrifically disfigured.

Hashmot is now 33, and for the past 19 years he spent his life living in the shadows, covering half his face with a crude bandanna and hiding his disfigurement from the world. Too scared to go back to work in the mangroves, he lost his job as a fisherman and has been forced to take menial work at a local market where he stays out of view of prying eyes.

A disfigured face photo of Hasmot is available but it is graphic and not for the squeamish.

Today, Hashmot lives in Nowbeki, Sathira. He is married and has two young children of his own. He wants to be able to play with his kids without them being scared of him, and having to hide his face from them as well.

Operation:

BritBangla want to help achieve the goal of raising the finance to give Hashmot the medical treatment that he desperately needs so that he can face society again, and more importantly, to be able to interact with his own children without alarming them.

Already, one the UK's leading physicians, has agreed to carry out the treatment but the £30K is still needed to bring him over to have this operation and to meet all the medical and other costs.

Also, begun a partnership with a BAFTA-winning producer who intends to film the whole life-changing process as part of a major UK documentary…

What are we going to do?

One of the UK's leading physicians has agreed to donate his time and carry out the complex reconstruction surgery in London Hashmot needs. However, Willing and Abel need to raise £30,000 to facilitate this surgery, in order to pay for Hashmot to come to London, and cover his hospital and medical costs while in UK. We are hoping to raise the money and do the surgery this year.

Willing and Abel are in discussion with a documentary-making company who are looking to film and tell Hashmot's story.

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO HELP?

Make a donation to Hashmot's cause: Donate Now or via cash/cheque

Virgin money giving is a not for profit organisation and will claim gift aid on your behalf where the donor is UK taxpayer.

Contacts in Dhaka for MRI Scan & support: Hashmots needs an MRI scan, so if you can help with any contacts in Dhaka that may be able to assist with high quality medical facilities or could provide accomodation or support then we would love to hear from you.

Provide Support in London: When Hashnot comes to London, we love to hear from people who could assist with translation, visiiting Hashmot, and providing familiar food for him as he recovers from surgery.

Fundraising activities: come up with fun fundraising activities at your workplace, school, universitiy or do a sponsored run, cake bake, etc.

Publicise through your friends and networks: publicise Hashmot's plight via your friends and organisation

Who are Willing and Abel?

Willing and Abel are a small charity that seek to provide connections and surgeries for children in developing countries who couldn't otherwise access the specialist surgery they require.

Willing and Abel is purely run by volunteers and have no overheads. All money raised goes directly to surgery and facilitating each person's surgery.

They have a board of Trustees that make the decisions regarding which cases it takes on, and have a wide network of contacts with surgeons and medical professionals around the world that kindly donate their time and expertise.

Registered Charity 1130492

BritBangla Fundraising Page:

http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/britbangla-hashmotinbangladesh

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Raynagor Girls Orphanage in Bangladesh

Charity support to girls orphanage in Raynagor Rajbari, Sylhet, Bangladesh.

Almost 900 children die every day (325,000 every year) due to disease and malnutrition. Thousands of street children are forced to work in menial jobs or survive by begging/scavenging. Many, unable to earn a decent living and without any form of adult guidance, are driven to crime and prostitution. Orphanages that currently exist fulfil a vital role by providing schooling, shelter, food and education. However, demand for places are high and a lot more needs to be done to address this harrowing problem effectively.

BritBangla fundraiser way back in May 2004 aimed to raise greater awareness of the half a million orphans in Bangladesh. £2000 was fundraised but that money has now depleted so donations are needed.

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Newham Asian Womens Project [NAWP]
NAWP Director: Rita Rupal

Click for Daily Bangladesh Article

Proceeds from the Dinner/Dance Eid Party was donated to this women's refuge based in East London (Newham). The Newham Asian Women's Project, a registered charity, was set up in 1987 as a community support group for Asian women (70% of whom are bangladeshi/sylheti). They provide emergency accommodation for women who suffer from domestic violence. Currently there are four refuges and 2 resource centres offering practical advice and counselling which are among the types of support offered. The 8-bed hostel for women offers a safe house for women fleeing violent relationships. It also has a Teen Department offering help and support for 16 –21 year old women. Newham Asian Women’s project (NAWP) provides safe housing, advice surgeries, education and counselling, training and career development opportunities. Its company ancillary facilities include emotional support for women affected by poverty, isolation and mental distress. NAWP's aim is to assist disadvantaged and socially excluded women towards a position where they are enabled to make informed decisions regarding their lives. Any money that is donated will further help this women's project to provide an essential service & support for women to get back on their feet and into the community again. Any donations would be gratefully received. For further information: www.nawp.org

Registered Charity: 239391

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BritBangla Mentoring

‘Working to bridge the gap for young people’
_________________________________________

Want to make a positive difference in someone’s life?
Are you gifted with the power to inspire, challenge and help someone rise above a problem...?
Then why not invest just a fraction of your time to REACH OUT and LISTEN to youngsters who are struggling to build a secure future and need your help to BRIDGE THE GAP in their lives.

Amongst our many proposals Britbangla aims to open up new avenues for young Bengalis who are at a pivotal point in their lives, that is, leaving childhood and entering adulthood. As professionals, and more importantly as Bengalis, we can identify with what it means to have to balance between two cultures whilst also trying to establish which career path to pursue. As such, we can serve to make this transition just that little bit easier by simply pointing these youngsters in the right direction and helping them to amount to something better.

Mentors provide psychosocial functions to their protégés (mentees) by acting as sponsors, teachers, guides, coaches and role models; the nature of the job is therefore quite diverse and not static. The main tasks of a mentor include:

* To support youths within a confidential relationship helping them to clarify goals and aspirations
* To create network possibilities for them
* To facilitate their entry into a profession
* To offer nonjudgmental sensitive responses to any problems that should arise

Mentoring begins by engendering trust, issuing a challenge, providing encouragement and offering a vision for the journey. Throughout this journey, the mentor supports and challenges their protégé to develop professionally as a person by providing ongoing assessment and feedback once a fortnight or just once a month.

The process of mentoring serves to benefit individuals on various different levels and across different contexts. In particular, where parents are either unavailable or unable to provide responsible guidance for their children, mentors can play a critical role in the life of a child by simply helping them to endure social, academic, career or personal crises. In turn, Protégés grow in their own intellectual competency, their sense of purpose and personal integrity; they learn from their role model how to better formulate thoughts, set priorities, interact with others more effectively and organize time more efficiently.

Ultimately, once the mentor relationship terminates, the aim is for the protégé to become an autonomous professional who possesses sufficient tools to tackle their environment at an optimum level. You as the mentor can observe the difference achieved which will be a product of your efforts.

What better way to make your mark in the world than by shaping someone’s future...?
For details on how to join BRITBANGLA MENTORING contact britbangla@britbangla.net

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Betar Bangla Community Radio

BritBangla supports the work of Betar Bangla. The radio that promotes Bengali arts, culture and the Bangla language. It works with the local young and the unemployed offering them the chance to develop their skills in arts and cultural activities through training and workshop. Betar Bangla radio serves the Bengali Community and is a voice for the East London's Bengali population. It has over 20,000 listerners and 5,000 online viewers. The radio has over 30 volunteers including the presenters. The popular Desh Culture Group, that performed a Natok show for the BritBangla Launch event, is a product of Betar Banga Radio.

Forum: Drugs, Crime and the Bengali Community in East London
Brady Centre, Hanbury Street, London E1
: 25 February 2004
BritBangla was pleased to support and be involved with the successful forum on "Drugs, Crime and the Bengali Community in East London". A community event organised by Betar Bangla and funded by London Probation Association. A short film "On D East" was specially produced for this event.

Key speakers included: John Powis (Chief Officer, London Probation), Maqsood Ahmed (Strategic Director, London Probation) Caroline Bates (Detective Superintendent, MET Police), Dru Shapling (Chair of London Criminal Justice Board), Councellor Doros Ullah, Adam Holmes (CIDA), Golam Mostafa (Udichi), Shafiur Rahman (NAFAS), Jaharial Sen (Film Director), and Sajjad Miah (Brick Lane Mosque).

Film: "On D East" directed by Jaharial Sen. A thought provoking, gritty urban tale that follows the trail of a young British-Bengali drug dealer and her dilemma to turn police informer. The casting members: Yasmin Ara, Shuman Khan and Rezuan Maruf. The film has been submitted to Raindance East Film Festival.


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Shadinata Trust: Projecting Bengali culture into the future

BritBangla works in collaboration with Shadinata Trust to celebrate the contributions of Bengalis in Britain. A photographic exhibition is planned for 2005 aims to promote the amazing culture, various tribal people and the colourful life in Bangladesh.

Shadinata means freedom. By celebrating a cultural phenomena unique to British Bengalis. The Shadinata Trust is a voluntary organisation working to raise awareness about Bengali history, culture and heritage through educational workshops, seminars, publications and cultural activities.

There are over 250,000-300,000 Bengalis living in Britain and their experience is an integral part of its history and cultural heritage. Shadinata aims to provide a catalyst for new models in educational and cultural documentation. As part of its goal to promote Bengali culture to a wider international audience, Shadinata Trust seeks to establish a resource centre that will provide a forum for Bengali culture, research and history. It also aims to bridge cultural gaps and give young members a significant voice within 21st Century Britain.

There is little opportunity at present for young Bengali people to gain insight into their cultural roots and identities as Bengalis raised in a western environment. By providing a base from which to facilitate, explore and highlight this unique British Bengali phenomena, Shadinata aims to provide a fresh link through which to expand upon a truly creative weave of multiculturalism and Bengali identity. For more info check: www.Shadinata.org.uk

If you are interested in receiving the Bengali info magazine produced by Shadinata Trust then email: taryn@britbangla.net

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