The Norman Transcript

Headlines

January 5, 2014

Microfinance helping to combat poverty in Bangladesh

NORMAN — Editor’s note: Transcript senior staff writer Joy Hampton is traveling with a U.S. State Department-sponsored group to Bangladesh. Journalists from Bangladesh visited Oklahoma in 2013.

DHAKA, Bangladesh — Oklahomans in Bangladesh have remained safe, comfortable and pampered this week even as Bangladesh is in a political upheaval that has cost lives and resulted in the burning of several schools slated to serve as election polling sites.

The young country is struggling, and yet its people remain courteous and friendly to Sooner state visitors on a State Department program.

Bangladesh is a very poor nation. In its landmark series on the garment industry, NPR reported that Bangladesh garment workers are the lowest paid in the world, and yet those jobs are an important step out of severe poverty and starvation for many. The industry employs mostly young women who come from rural areas to work in Dhaka, the nation’s capital.

The garment industry is only one means out of poverty, however. Microfinance of village artisans and entrepreneurs is being used at the grassroots level to help combat poverty in Bangladesh.

In 1972, Sir Fazle Hasan Abed was a young man with a vision to decrease early childhood mortality in Bangladesh. An employee of Shell Oil Company at the time, he wanted to make his young country a better place for its citizens.

“The biggest killer of children in Bangladesh was diarrhea,” Abed said.

Abed discovered there was a simple solution to this deadly problem — an oral rehydration solution with the right combination of sugar, salt and water would save lives.

He founded the Bangladesh Rehabilitation Assistance Committee, now known as BRAC, to teach one woman per household how to make this solution and teach the other women to make it. The organization had the ambitious goal of reaching out to 16 million households through teaching people in their homes.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Braddy_1. Norman North teen struck by freight train recovering with therapy

    A Norman North teen struck by a freight train in May is on the road to recovery and ready to get back to school after spending most of his summer in a hospital. Harrison Braddy, 16, has been staying busy with rehab and physical therapy ...

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Storm victims face loan dilemma

    The tornadoes, flooding and hail that struck Oklahoma last year left hundreds of millions of dollars in property damage, causing many home and business owners to seek help in the form of low-interest federal loans....

    July 27, 2014

  • Teen critical after rescue

    A 17-year-old Yukon male was transported to the hospital Sunday after a near drowning incident at Lake Thunderbird in the Party Cove area. Emergency crews responded to the lake after a report of a possible drowning around 5:30 p.m. ...

    July 27, 2014

  • Migrant kids go to Mass

    The services have all the elements of a typical Sunday Mass — singing, scripture, a sermon, prayers, communion and worship....

    July 27, 2014

  • Injury accident reported

    Transcript Staff Emergency crews responded to an injury accident around 10:20 p.m. Sunday in the 1000 block of 80th Avenue Southeast where there were reports of someone pinned. Several reports indicated a vehicle struck a tree causing one ...

    July 28, 2014

  • Photo Slideshow: James Garner through the years

    Photos of James Garner...

    July 27, 2014

  • Prisons expand reach to bring training to more officers

    McALESTER — Joshua Drake once was offered the chance to be a corrections officer but turned it down because he didn’t want to leave his wife and aging parents for six weeks to train hundreds of miles away in El Reno....

    July 27, 2014

  • SWIMMER Aquatic center could serve many community needs

    Michael Yoch could have been the kid with asthma sitting on the sidelines — could have been, but wasn’t. Michael had trouble running because of his asthma, which made it difficult to play soccer and many other sports his friends loved. ...

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Director leaves decade of memories

    Maureen Dolan is giving up the post as director of St. Joseph’s Early Childhood Development Center, fondly called “St. Joe’s” by the many parents whose pre-school children have spent their weekdays under her care over the past 10 years....

    July 27, 2014

  • Health officials prepare for flu

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Following a flu season in which a record number of Oklahomans died as a result of the virus, state and county health officials say educating the public and general common sense are vital to reducing both the death rate and ...

    July 27, 2014