Hundreds of countries have locked down in order to reduce the spread of COVID 19 and save lives around the world. Lockdown means suspension of all the economic activities except health care and groceries. As a part of it, the Bangladesh Government has announced general vacation for all sectors and issued a lockdown all over the country. A major part of the population of Bangladesh live on temporary livelihood and earn on a daily basis. Due to this lockdown, their sufferings started to extend and they were in dying need of assistance from others. Finding no other options, many youth organizations of the country came forward with the support of the well-off people and renowned corporates to assist these underprivileged people of society. Bidyanondo Foundation has done a tremendous job to stay beside these poor and underprivileged families by responding initially during this crisis. Apart from them, Gift for Good, Volunteer Opportunities, Pashe Achi Initiative and many other youth organizations came forward to support these underprivileged people.
Volunteer for Bangladesh, the youth wing of JAAGO Foundation is one of the organizations who has played a vital role to combat the pandemic and help the poor people of our society. Initially, when COVID 19 started to spread from country to country, they were the first organization in Bangladesh who initiated an awareness campaign countrywide where hygiene and safety kits like face mask, hand sanitizer, soaps were distributed in different districts of the country. When the lockdown was imposed, our government issued a restriction towards the regular movement of people outside of their residence. But these dedicated and courageous souls came forward and distributed food and hygiene items in 32 different districts of Bangladesh and brought smiles to 96,000 people with the help of JAAGO Foundation and also on their own.
More than 26 different initiative were conducted by them where they supported these people directly by working in the field level. Besides this, they continued their online campaigns to promote the awareness and safety measures to reduce the threat of COVID 19. Moreover, they have initiated the first ever telemedicine campaign around the country with the support of our dedicated volunteers of Mymensingh district. People are getting effective health services 24/7 without going outside and within a few minutes.
The situation was turning worse when the super cyclone Amphan hit the southern coast of Bangladesh by the end of May. During the lockdown and COVID 19 crisis, this natural disaster increased the sufferings of the people living in the coastal areas to a greater level. During that time, our volunteers from Satkhira District, where the cyclone affected the most, had played a benevolent role to reduce the risk factor and save lives. They raised early warnings in villages to avoid rain and storm, staying in the cyclone shelters to maintain social distancing and support the people, supplied water and saline in the most affected areas and also helped the local people to rebuild the dams and damaged houses.
This sort of dedication and courage was never seen before during a dual crisis faced by a country. They are still working to raise funds, develop projects and implement them for the welfare of society. We were locked down inside, but they played their role actively outside. Their effort keeps our hopes alive and lets people dream for a better world after this crisis.