United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the China Embassy in Bangladesh, along with the district administration have distributed relief materials among the flood victims of Nilphamari on Saturday.
In presence of Asaduzzaman Noor MP, Cultural Affairs Minister, Nilphamari Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Khaled Rahim handed over trunks to the flood victims, together with household materials and CGI sheets to help affected families recover from the damages.
In Bangladesh, the 2017 South-Asian monsoons inundated the northern flood plains of the country, severely affecting 7 million people in 31 districts. Flood waters destroyed 82,000 houses and damaged many more, leaving 320,000 people in need of support to repair their homes and replace their damaged belongings once the flood waters receded.
To support the flood response, the Ministry of Commerce (MoFCOM) of the People’s Republic of China have partnered with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to provide $4 million for early recovery efforts in Bangladesh.
As part of this joint initiative of UNDP and China, Rohingya women through the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), received life-saving reproductive health kits, medicines and supplies to health facilities particularly for women and girls of reproductive age. In total 13910 families in Kurigram, Gaibandha, Lalmonirhat, Bogra and Nilphamari districts received the relief materials and 118,000 women received emergency Reproductive Health kits in Cox’s Bazar.
Attending the distribution event, Li Guangjun, Chinese Economic and Commercial Counselor to Bangladesh, said that China “sympathized with the flood victims and refugees in Bangladesh” and “appreciated the humanitarian assistance provided by UNDP in partnership with other organizations.” He hoped that the materials would help to improve the flood victims and refugees’ lives.
Asaduzzaman Noor MP, Cultural Affairs Minister, in his remarks said, “I hope this kind of support from UNDP and China will continue in future, whenever there is any disaster” He thanked the government of China and UNDP for extending their support. He also praised UNFPA, for taking extra care of the women and girls of reproductive age, considering gender-based violence.
Sudipto Mukerjee, Country Director, UNDP Bangladesh said, “China has been increasingly supporting developing countries in humanitarian relief and recovery as well as advance the UN’s 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. This partnership is a reflection of South-South Cooperation”. He further said, “It is expected that after this first of its kind initiative, UNDP and Chinese Government will explore other areas of collaboration especially relating to disaster management and early recovery in Bangladesh.”
Highlighting UNFPA’s contribution, Iori Kato, Deputy Representative, UNFPA Bangladesh said “UNFPA supported 26000 flood affected women and girls of reproductive age to ensure their reproductive health and rights needs and promote dignity of women and girls, improving their mobility and be able to access the lifesaving humanitarian aid”. “Protecting dignity and ensuring support for gender based violence survivors in Cox’s Bazar refugee camp, we also provided life-saving interventions to women and girls,” Iori told.
Among others, representatives from local government, NGOs, spoke at the event.