Over the past three decades, we rehabilitated thousands of mothers. The majority of them (over 70%) come from the northern riverbank erosion districts of Bangladesh. More than 120,000 people are displaced by river erosion every year in Bangladesh. Climate change has contributed to rapid siltation of the river, which is intensifying bank erosion during the monsoon. The impacts of riverbank erosion are multifarious: impacting on domestic and social areas as well as the economics, health, education and politics of Bangladeshi society. The most affected by this are the adult female members of society. As such you can understand why The Sreepur Village is deeply involved with this environmental issue. Every year on the 5th of June, The Sreepur Village joins the rest of the world to commemorate the World Environment Day (WED).
The behaviours and activities of modern day society are causing irreparable damage to the ecology and overall environment of individual countries. Irresponsible behaviour in the name of development is contributing to the destruction of Bangladesh’s wetlands and polluting the rivers, destroying not only marine life but also many of the cities as rivers lay dying. This day encourages people to get outdoors and into nature and feel its beauty and importance in order to protect the shared earth. According to UN secretary general “without a healthy environment, we cannot end poverty or build prosperity.’’ By leading this concept The Sreepur Village observed World Environment Day 2017.
In the morning, all the children from Shishu-Bikash (Nursery) up to higher study (secondary and higher secondary) gathered at the school campus. At the assembly, children made an extraordinary promise to keep their environment clean and protect every tree from demolition. They have a slogan for the godsend of World Environment Day. Every week on Tuesday, we run a cleaning programme on campus. But, for WED all the children and staff took part in a special cleaning programme on Monday. They collected polythene around the village, which is the most injurious material for soil. They took it as a competition as we declared that the highest polythene gatherer will be awarded. So they did splendidly. Now you will not find any polythene and trash in the Village.
The leading action of the day was the tree plantation. During this season, due to frequent Kalbaishakhi (Nor ’Wester), we lost some of our beloved trees. Targeting the day, Rakhal our agricultural officer, bought thirty fruit plants along with some flowering plants. Particularly, he bought a Krishnachura (Peacock Flower) sapling for our mothers. We lost one of our old Krishnachura trees in last month’s storm, which was planted when The Sreepur Village was first established. Our mothers planted the tree in the place of the previous one and they become very happy for doing so. They also planted some other Mango and Amla (Indian Gooseberry) trees. At the same time, our higher study girls drove a cleanliness campaign out of the gate, into the local village. At the end of The Sreepur Village WED programme, chocolates were distributed among the children as a reward, which as you can imagine were excitedly received.
Ignorance and wrong beliefs surrounding disability, compounded with a negative and derogatory attitude of the community (including family members) have contributed to the marginal development in the disability sector in Bangladesh.