Roksana Khatun lost her right leg when the building she was working in collapsed on top of her. The Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh was the deadliest accidental structural failure in modern human history, killing almost 1200 people and injuring thousands more. Rokhsana didn’t think she'd ever walk, let alone work, again. Today, armed with a prosthetic leg, she is not only back in the workforce, but is earning more than what she made in Rana Plaza. Her story is emblematic of the work of the BRAC Limb and Brace Centre, which has equipped 42,000 people in Bangladesh with customised, affordable prosthetic limbs to date.
Breastfeeding is crucial to ensure proper growth and development of newborns. A new initiative in Bangladesh is building mothers’ support networks to ensure that the workplace doesn’t become a hindrance to breastfeeding. So, how is the initiative faring?
Non-communicable diseases are responsible for 70% of deaths in Bangladesh. BRAC is partnering with the Government of Bangladesh to tackle this, through a combination of community health workers and technology.
One in five people in Bangladesh suffer from presbyopia, a condition which makes seeing things difficult up close - and can heavily impact livelihood opportunities. BRAC, in partnership with VisionSpring, and a cadre of community health workers, took to communities in Bangladesh in 2006 with a radical idea of ‘demedicalising’ the treatment of presbyopia. Less than 20 years later, this has resulted in two million people in Bangladesh being able to see better.
At Frugal Innovation Forum 2022, we revisited the fundamental pillars of development with the post-pandemic world in mind. We reflected on the lessons learnt from the pandemic and together identified three key thematic focus areas in our quest to build back better.
Bangladesh is on track to end malaria - cases fell by 91% in endemic areas (from 84,690 in 2008 to 7,294 in 2021). Real-time case notification, strong surveillance systems and continuation of treatment and services even during the pandemic have all contributed to this feat.
BRAC is currently the hub of the world's largest non-government network of community health workers. Across Bangladesh, this network of 50,000 women are taking essential healthcare to the doorsteps of families and reaching the last mile, standing by 80 million people every year.