Role of BRAC in Disaster Management in Bangladesh is tremendous

Role of BRAC in Disaster Management in Bangladesh is tremendous and does not able to express in word. It played an anchoring role for the people at the time of natural calamities and disaster in Bangladesh. BRAC, was initiated in 1972 as a short-term relief and rehabilitation project following the Liberation War. BRAC has quite a long experience in natural disaster management by doing work for the victims especially for the poor people living in rural and slum areas of Bangladesh.

Starting with relief work gradually. BRAC has learnt how to extend assistance for the victims of other natural calamities like cyclone, flood and drought. BRAC provided support for cyclone victims in 1991, and flood in 1974, 1987, 1988, 1998, 2000 and this year 2004.

Flood in 1998

The devastating flood of 1998 had important lessons for government and the NGOs. As
soon as the flood reached disastrous proportion, BRAC began a massive relief operation for
the marooned people to help them cope with the situation.

To hold back the down sliding of its programme participants who lived in the flood affected villages into destitution, BRAC undertook a comprehensive programme to restore homesteads, rehabilitate agriculture, create employment, prevent epidemics of gastrointestinal diseases, provide nutritional
support to pregnant women and children, and to bring life back to normal.

Flood in 2004

As of August 8, 2004, 33,561,393 people have been affected. 1,683,839 Bangladeshis are
sheltered in 5,021 flood protection centers. 14,488,159 acres of crops are fully damaged
(Source Food and Disaster Management Ministry: Relief Control Rom, Government of
Bangladesh). This year 2004 flood is not as severe as those of 1998, the volume of damage
and sufferings caused by it was greater.

This year’s flood has brought about much more damage to the country’s rural economy and infrastructure as much of the progress made in these areas by the government and NGOs over the past few years has been washed away.

In sum, while the 1998 floods were more severe in terms of both water level and duration,
the damage caused to the country’s infrastructure by the 2004 floods is much greater given
the expansion of the rural economy over the past few years. This is particularly true for the
poor, given the improvements in their living standards.

BRAC’s 2004 Flood Relief Programme Strategy

As soon as the flood reached disastrous proportion, BRAC came to the aid of the affected
people with the full might of the organization in both rural and urban areas. It began a
massive relief operation for the marooned people to help them avoid starvation. Makeshift
kitchens were opened at BRAC field offices to prepare hand-made wheat-flour ruti and it was
distributed with molasses and safe drinking water. Relief materials during and after flood ruti,
beaten rice, molasses, pap rice, rice, pulses, biscuits, milk for children, bleaching powder,
alum, included water purifying tablets, ORS packets, assistance for tube well washing,
repairing, cleaning, and latrine and medical check up and treatment.

After Flood (The BRAC Flood Rehabilitation Programme)

The objective of BRAC’s 2004 Flood Rehabilitation Programme is to repair the damage
caused by the flooding and help the poor rebuild their livelihoods. The rehabilitation
Programme will work to repair damage caused by flooding to three main sectors, each
representing a significant area of

? Health Sector
? Education Sector
? Livelihoods Sector

Under this Rehabilitation programme BRAC is going to distribute soft loan and flood loan for
the victims to reestablished their houses and income generating programme.
Rehabilitation programme included several steps. BRAC has planned to create a “Disaster
Cell” to organize activities on future coping up mechanism.


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