Global Campaign Launches in Bangladesh

Tuesday 3 May 2016

Before approximately 300 staff of Save the Children Bangladesh, William Lynch (interim CD) inaugurated the launching of Every Last Child in Bangladesh on April 26, 2016. Referring to significant achievements made by Bangladesh, he noted that successes coexist with inequities and that these inequities converge in greatest number in children living in slums and children living in remote hard to reach areas.  He emphasized that where you are born, and where you live in Bangladesh matters. Citing the Country Spotlight report, he demanded increased allocation in education as Bangladesh is lagging far behind international standards set by UNESCO. He noted that an education divide persists between regions and talked about slum schools averaging 1000 pupils, 4 times the national average of 268 pupils per school.  Moreover, only 21% of children in a hard to reach area such as Sylhet were delivered in a health facility compared to a much lower national average. Girls in slums are much likelier to be married, then urban counterparts, and harassment and violence of children seems to be on the rise, manifesting most visibly on the streets of cities.  He made a number of rallying cries to support the campaign, believe in it, collaborate as an office and ensure our presence in the social media.

Hagar Russ (Director, Policy, Rights and Governance) presented the Every Last Child Campaign and the significance of this campaign to the most excluded children in Bangladesh.  She drew attention to the Campaign asks in Education, Health and protection around identification, higher investment, differential planning and allocation and dedicated programmes in slums and hard to reach rural areas. She promised that this campaign would be built on collaboration and strategic coordination between sectors. Next, there were separate thematic presentations from Child Protection, Child Poverty, Education, Humanitarian, Health, Nutrition and HIV/AID and Policy Rights and Governance. These were very interactive presentations- videos, role plays, slide-shows to music, a ‘live’ cartoon strip- on the issues faced by excluded children in slums and hard to reach areas through a thematic lens.

A staff team composed of Sanjoy Chakraborty, Md. Zakir Hossain, Haimanti Ghosh and Russelly Kabir sang a  song composed for the campaign. Shamsul Alam Bokul facilitated a session where staff undertook an imaginary journey through their childhood. Later, all staff signed a large banner expressing their commitment for the cause of campaign. Sharon Hauser made concluding remarks and red and white balloons were released to mark the occasion.

Later, journalists from leading media houses were briefed over lunch. After introductory remarks from William Lynch, Hagar Russ shared perspectives of the global campaign and its significance to the excluded children of Bangladesh. Leading journalists shared their thoughts and expressed their support for this campaign.  

A showreel on Every Last Child Campaign- launching in Bangladesh.

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