Materialization of dreams…
Kamal Uddin, a young man from Hathazari North Madrasa area, thought that his life was complete and his dream was fulfilled by marrying the person of his choice against the consent of his family. But it didn’t take long for him to come out of this bubble. After leaving his family behind, Kamal Uddin realized that the reality is very difficult. Kamal Uddin had been in extreme despair for a while and he thought his life would be cut short. There was no money in hand or any known means of financing with which to start a business. Kamal Uddin rented a house in Chowdhuryhat area. There he started working with a friend at a poultry farm. At this time, he got to know that an NGO called Ghashful provides necessary advice and loans to create employment for the youth. Then one day Kamal Uddin talked to the branch manager of Ghashful Chowdhuryhat branch and discussed about having a loan on easy terms for setting up a poultry farm. He was enrolled as a member of Chowdhuryhat Branch Bazar Samiti: 05 male members. Seeing his determination to negotiate and implement his dream, the Branch Manager gave him a loan of Fifty Thousand Taka for the first time. Kamal Uddin started his dream journey by setting up a small poultry farm with this initial capital.
Gradually, financial prosperity began to come to the family, and his dream began to grow. He repaid the loan within a year and started fish farming with a loan of Tk 60,000 in the second phase by leasing a pond next to the poultry farm. In the 3rd phase, he raised the poultry farm with a loan of Tk 60,000.
Unfortunately, during the unprecedented times of COVID-19 pandemic his business went down like the rest of the world. His poultry farm was closed, and he burned up his capital again. At the end of the lockdown, he contacted Ghashful again and applied for a loan again. After hearing his [resent situation, the Branch Manager gave him a loan of Tk. 150,000 from the incentive loan (Kom Shud er loan). Kamal Uddin resumed his poultry farm and started fish farming on a large scale with the lease of another large pond.
Now the monthly income from his poultry farm is about 50 thousand takas and the income from selling fish is about 25 thousand takas. He is now well-off and his family has become financially stable. He now has a happy family with two-year-old son Talha. He always mentions Ghashful to express his gratefulness for the financial and emotional support that he received. Dreamer Kamal Uddin still dreams that his poultry farm will grow even bigger, and he will have a permanent dream house of his own. For other ambitious youth of the area, Kamal Uddin is now a shining example of hope and motivation, not despair.
Getting to see the world again!
65-year-old Hiran Barua, from Ward 8 of Guman mardan Union of Hathazari Upazila, has a family consisting of his wife and 4 sons, among which 2 are married, and 2 are school-going who depends on their father. Even in such an old age, Hiran runs a small tea shop next to his house to earn living for his family. His life is being cut short by poverty. Pressurized with loads of responsibilities, he seldom gets time to visit physician and his health remains constantly neglected. In February 2019, while the ENRICH Health Inspector visited him, he discovered that Hiran has been from eye problems for a long time and the condition of his eye was alarming.
When a special eye camp was organized in Guman mardan Union under the Ghashful-ENRICH program in collaboration with PKSF, the health inspector informed Hiran Barua about the camp and requested him to come to the eye camp. Specialist doctors from Chittagong Lions Charitable Eye Hospital came for eye treatment. The doctor examined his eyes and told him that he needed eye surgery. Hiran broke down thinking about how to manage money for him and how to run the tea shop and his family in his absence. But with the reassurance and support of the health inspector and sincere cooperation of the health officer Anik Barua, Hiran Barua underwent a free operation on July 28, 2019. After the cataract surgery, he can see everything, and he is now back in business, earning an income and living happily with his family. He shared his feelings saying, “If not for Ghashful, I could never get the surgery done. I had never expected to get my eyesight back.” He blesses all concerned, thanked PKSF-Ghashful ENRICH program and expressed deep gratitude.
When a special eye camp was organized in Guman mardan Union under the Ghashful-ENRICH program in collaboration with PKSF, the health inspector informed Hiran Barua about the camp and requested him to come to the eye camp. Specialist doctors from Chittagong Lions Charitable Eye Hospital came for eye treatment. The doctor examined his eyes and told him thathe needed eye surgery. After talking to his family,he went to the hospital for an eye operation on the given date, and with the advice of the health inspector and sincere cooperation of the health officer Anik Barua, Hiran Barua underwent a free operation on July 28, 2019 under ENRICH program. After the cataract surgery, he can see everything, and he is now back in business, earning an income and living happily with his family. He expressed his feelings about getting eye care services under the Ghashful-ENRICH program, saying, “If Ghashful had not had eye surgery, I might have gone blind. I never expected to see everything again.” He blesses all concerned, thanked PKSF-Ghashful ENRICH program and expressed deep gratitude.
Efforts and persistence that are truly inspirational…
It’s the story of Mohammad Ebadul Hoque who is an inhabitant of Mozaffarpur village of Hathazari Upazila. It is a remote village in Mekhal Union. His life story is source of inspiration for many other unemployed men. He is man of 48 now. He had been fighting with difficulties to bring economic solvency for his family. He came back to native land in 2005 and finding out no other way; he decided to adopt farming as the source of income. Accordingly, he launched his mission with very trivial amount of land; 3 or 4 decimals. He was ready to expand his farming. But he was in need of financial assistance as well he needed additional land. He rented 60 decimal lands from his neighbour and engaged the entire land in cultivating paddy, vegetables, chilli and so on. However, he was not successful enough in his earning. He was about to become disheartened, at that moment, he got in touch with PACE team members of Ghashful.
With the co-operation of Ghashful, Ebadul became successful in safe vegetable cultivation and spices growing. It encouraged him a lot. Since then he is growing sweet chili which has much national and international recognition. Ebadul has attained much knowledge and experience in sweet chili cultivation and safe vegetable growing from the project. Now he is using modern scientific method. At the same time, he provides advices to others in this regard.
Ghashful, PKSF, PACE all are now with him, they came forward to stand by the side of Ebadul Hoque. Ghashful was ready to provide every possible help to him. He is arranging training program for the unemployed youths of his locality. So, they can be benefitted through these training sessions. They can learn how to prepare cultivable land, h ow to use compost, vermin compost, how to make quick compost and their use, how to sow seeds, how to plant saplings and so on.
At the same time Ebadul is a model of self- made man for them. He believes that commercialized cultivation is sure to bring economic solvency for one’s family as well as to contribute to the total development of the nation.
Shaira Begum’s blissful new life!
married Shaira Begum, a 15-year old fifth grader. He had a daughter whom he got married off at teenage, and a mentally challenged son from his previous wife, and two twin sons from Shaira. At a road accident Abu Zahurbecame paralysed and permanently lost the ability to do a decent work, and took up begging as the means for survival.
In 2015 Ghashful initiated ENRICH Program in Guman Mardan Union under Hathazari Upazila of Chattogram in collaboration with PKSF.In connection to this, among other activities, selection of beggars had been started as part of the Beggar Rehabilitation Program under which Abu Zahur got selected as the beneficiary. As per the agreement, executed in March 2016, he would be provided with income generating materials worth One Lakh Taka to make himself economically dependent and quit begging.Unfortunatey, few days before the initiation of Beggar Rehabilitation Program, Abu Zahur slipped off his feet and fell into a pond and died in that accident. Shaira Begum became shattered after her husband’s death. She was at a loss with her twin children studying in secondary school and the mentally disabled child from Zahur’s previous wife.The news of Abu Zahur’s death was immediately reported to the PKSF. Considering the struggling condition of Zahur’s family, PKSF decided to rehabilitate Shaira Begum and select her as an Entrepreneurial member, including her in the Beggar Rehabilitation Program under ENRICH Program. Shaira Begum was given One Lakh Taka and a feasible plan was made on how to utilize the money to run her family independently with the help of one red cow capable of producing about 3 kg of milk with a calf. Furthermore, three rickshaws vans were provided to earn daily income. Besides, necessary financial and technical assistance for growing vegetable farms and poultry rearing were also provided. She became delighted to receive this generous support.
After 4 years in December 2020, the Entrepreneurial member Shaira Begum has a cow which will give birth in a month or two, and has two bulls, has two mother chickens and 24 chicks; besides, she also produces some vegetables. She runs the family by selling vegetables, chickens, eggs and milk; deposits money in the bank in every two months. After meeting the daily expenses of her family, she had One Lakh Three Thousand Two Hundred and seventy-four Taka deposited in her bank at the beginning of December 2020. This bank account is jointly managed by the Project Coordinator and Shaira Begum in order to supervise that the money is withdrawn only when needed and not spent unnecessarily. On behalf of the program, regular activities regarding rehabilitation, calculations regarding income and expenditure, and visits of the families of Entrepreneurial members are conducted on a monthly basis. Their problems and possibilities are discussed and actions are taken.
The younger son of Shaira, named Jobayer Hossain, learned the works of pipe-pitting after passing the eighth grade. He left for Dubai on December, 2020. They spent One Lakh and twenty-five thousand Taka in the purpose of going abroad. One Lakh Taka was paid by Shaira Begum from her account and the rest will be earned abroad by Jobayer and sent back. Shaira currently has Taka 3,284 deposited in the bank. The elder son, Jonayed Hossain, has completed SSC and learned technical work related to computers, and is waiting to go abroad. Besides, the mentally challenged son is now better than before. He can perform the daily day-to-day activities including taking regular medication. The daughter occasionally comes to visit her father’s house to meet Shaira.
This is one of the many instances of how ENRICH Program of Ghashful is working in collaboration with PKSF to make a family self-sufficient by providing financial support and giving technical assistances and regular visits. Today, the helpless Shaira Begum is now capable of dreaming for an improved new life.
A Journey of a Tailor to be a successful Teacher
Education is a must for a nation. It is the belief that made Bokul Akhter to take the pledge of teaching the drop-out students with the help of Ghashful. She joined the Ghashful Second Chance Education (SCE) Project as a teacher not only for earning money as a professional teacher but also had adopted the profession to fulfil her social commitment to develop the condition of the community people with the means of education. The belief in exploring herself through the engagement with social activities is one of the most respectable missions in her life.
Being a girl from a poor family, it had been quite impossible for Bokul to be a professional teacher Bokul Akhter in perspective of her socio-economic perspective. Bokul Akhter was born in 1995 in a poor family living in Chattogram city. Her father died during her childhood. Her mother is a housewife. Bokul has three sisters and she is the elder one. To run the family, her family had always been in the extreme need of having financial support. So, she had to work for earning money just after having passed the H.S.C exam. She started her livelihood as a tailor and shouldered the responsibility of her family. The struggling job of a tailor made her to be deviated from her dream of being a teacher for a while. Fortunately, she came to know about Ghashful and the activities especially under the SCE Project through her sister. She took an attempt to get back to her mission of working as a professional teacher. After facing an interview conducted by Ghashful, she was selected as a teacher for the SCE project.
In 2017, she joined the 15 days long training, conducted under the SCE project. The training program assisted her a lot to play the role of a teacher successfully. She joined the school as a teacher. Bokul had to take this job as a challenge to face as she had to fulfil the mission of working with drop out students. She was supported fully by the Ghashful team members. From the perspective, Ghashful has a great contribution to make her a teacher besides working as a tailor.
Now Bokul Akhter can earn money by doing two types of work. The achievement is that her dream of working as a socially committed teacher came true. In the morning she teaches the drop out students and after going home she starts her sewing works. As a result, she can provide a satisfactory level of financial support to her family.