20 April 2009, Dhaka. BRAC is pleased to announce that Norway's State Secretary for International Development, Hakon A. Gulbandsen, undertook a field trip to Patharghata, Barguna, on Sunday, April 19 2009, to observe BRAC's Sidr rehabilitation work. He was accompanied by the Norwegian Ambassador and BRAC's Executive Director.
The State Secretary saw BRAC's implementation of activities on improved housing for the homeless people. He spoke to victims about their Sidr experience and learnt how they were gradually resuming normal lives. He conveyed his condolences to families that had lost close relatives in the cyclone. He saw how a Pond Sand Filter is providing safe drinking water to over 1000 people and expressed satisfaction with the benefits that the filter was offering to the community. He inspected an under-construction multi-purpose cyclone shelter that is being built on a "killa" to secure livestock during cyclones.
The State Secretary talked to the local people about climate change and how they perceived its impacts. He was impressed by the BRAC demonstration projects on agriculture and the ways in which BRAC was preparing communities to adapt to climate change. He appreciated the substantive role women play in rural development and their gradual entry into the work force.
The State Secretary met with Chairperson Fazle Hasan Abed today (20.04.09) at BRAC headquarters during which they discussed health and education outreach activities for reaching the MDGs, how Bangladesh could be role model for adaptive climate change efforts and the critical importance of gender equality.