We are exceptionally pleased to share some news from the Bogra district in Bangladesh.

Over the last few years, we have worked with people affected by leprosy to form a federation in order to improve the social and economic independence of the people affected by the disease in the Bogra district. The aim of the project is to help them advocate for their rights and for public services, as well as to empower them with knowledge and skills in human rights and the advocacy communication needed to do so.

Picture of the certificate given to the Bogra federationWe’re very pleased to announce that the Bogra Federation is now an official group and has been able to register itself as an official community-based organisation (CBO). They recently received the certificate from the Ministry of Social Welfare, which means that the group members are accepted and allowed to continue their activities to raise awareness about leprosy in the district. They have received an operation manual signed by the same authority that includes their aim and general rules that are common for all CBOs. Importantly, although the members are affected by leprosy and disability, the federation did not receive any special policy and they are treated like any other organisation.

Pictured on the right is the certificate given to the Bogra Federation

On a long-term basis, the goal is for the Bogra federation to one day become a fully-fledged non-government organisation, working together with other associations to repeal discriminatory laws and practices. Ultimately, we hope for the leaders and members of the federation to have ownership over projects themselves, so that they can carry on with their work once our project ends.

It goes without saying that this is a very exciting step for the Bogra federation and we will continue to support the group as needed until they are able to operate independently.

You can read more about our projects in Bangladesh here, especially our two past projects in the district of Bogr: the Sustainable Development Project and Learning to Live with Dignity.