About the Situation
By the Numbers
More than 158,570,000 people live in Bangladesh
40% of the population lives below the poverty line
Less than half of the population is literate
(Sources: U.N. and U.S. government)
Bangladesh is one of the world’s most-densely populated and poorest countries in the world.
Some 40% of the population lives below the poverty line, according to the U.S. government. And many of its 158 million residents survive on less than $2 a day.
Nearly 20% of the population relies on agriculture for income—but tropical storms and coastal flooding hinder many Bangladeshi’s abilities to make a secure living from farming, exacerbating impoverished and dire living conditions.
How Islamic Relief is Helping
In 1991, Islamic ReliefTM provided vital emergency assistance to the people of Bangladesh in response to a tropical cyclone. Islamic Relief has worked in to help residents there ever since.
Here’s a breakdown of some programs Islamic Relief has supported in Bangladesh:
COMMUNITY-BASED SAFE WATER SUPPLY, SANITATION, AND HYGIENE
This project aims to save lives and decrease the incidence of water-related illnesses and harmful effects of unhygienic sanitation. The effort will assist more than 2,000 people in the Sylhet District.
ENHANCING RESILIENCE OF CLIMATE-AFFECTED COMMUNITIES
The goal of this program is to help improve quality of life, and to help reduce poverty and inequality throughout the Southwest by providing the means for communities to be resilient in the face of natural disaster. The construction of shelters; carbon storage and emission reduction activities; promotion of climate adaptive livelihood options; a variety of training sessions, including on First Aid and Rescue; social mobilization efforts; enhanced early-warning systems; advocacy campaigns and more are part of this initiative. More than 13,200 are being helped.
RESILIENCE THROUGH WATERSHED MANAGEMENT, RISK REDUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT
This is intended to decrease communities’ vulnerability to natural disasters through activities including construction of a new sewage treatment and water recycling facility, and stockpiling emergency response materials.
RAMADAN FOOD DISTRIBUTION
In 2007, Islamic Relief provided emergency aid, including food packages, medical assistance, and rehabilitation services to survivors of Cyclone Sidr, considered the deadliest storm to hit Bangladesh in more than a decade.
WINTER ASSISTANCE FOR COLD-WAVE SURVIVORS
Some 2,200 families—approximately 11,000 individuals—received items in 2013 to protect them from the harsh cold, such as shawls and blankets. The project focused on communities in northern Bangladesh, where temperatures were among the lowest in the country in the last 45 years.