River erosion in Bangladesh
(Photo credit: Shehzad Noorani/BRAC)
Bangladesh, BRAC’s headquarters and country of origin, suffers from floods, cyclones and, in some areas, drought. As climate change forces the frequency and intensity of natural disasters to build, Bangladesh and other nations in this world face the devastating consequences: The country could lose up to a third of its land mass, displacing nearly 40 million people.
Earth Day is a great opportunity for individuals to reevaluate the small choices they make everyday – paper or plastic, long or short shower, biking or driving to work – in order to contribute positively to the cause and start to temper the effects of climate change.
BRAC continues to build its capacity in order to better respond to natural disasters, saving lives and preventing loss. Since its inception, BRAC USA has mobilized resources and provided support after 2 devastating cyclones in Bangladesh, helping BRAC implement long-term recovery plans aimed toward building the nation’s ability to respond and adapt. After the tidal surges of Cyclone Aila in Bangladesh in May 2009 left hundreds of thousands of people homeless, without fresh water or food, BRAC reached out to the affected communities with emergency relief and plans for longer term rehabilitation, like introducing varieties of seeds and rice that can grow in the now-salinated water.
By educating ourselves about climate change and the perils of continuing to live as we have, making changes as we go, we can work towards avoiding future disasters altogether. To learn more, take the Clinton Foundation’s new climate quiz
– for each person who takes it, $2 is donated toward the purchase of solar flashlights for those living in camps in Haiti.