BRAC USA

Our mission is to empower people and communities in situations of poverty, illiteracy, disease and social injustice. Our interventions aim to achieve large scale, positive changes through economic and social programs that enable men and women to realize their potential.
Aug 29, 2013

Looking to the future

ELA members at a microfinance group meeting.
ELA members at a microfinance group meeting.

With the support of the Nike Foundation, BRAC’s girl effect work in Bangladesh continues to make important strides forward in improving the social as well as economic standing of girls in their community. BRAC Bangladesh reports that 65 percent of club members in Bangladesh now have a savings account with the program, showing how they are putting in action the lessons they've learned so far about financial literacy.

Club committees have also been established for 360 clubs, made up of older members of the community who may be club alumnae or may otherwise be interested in supporting the clubs locally. Thirteen of the committees have even successfully established local trust funds expressly for that purpose.

As BRAC had experienced decades ago with its microfinance village organizations using philanthropic capital as a catalyst to reach self-sustainability, that same transformation is taking root with our adolescent girls programming, and everyone is grateful to have you on that journey with us.

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May 23, 2013

From safe space to salon

Jackline Chikusa, ELA member, salon owner.
Jackline Chikusa, ELA member, salon owner.

Jackline Chikusa, who turns 22 this year, is proud to be an alumna of one of 180 Empowerment & Livelihoods for Adolescents (ELA) Clubs BRAC has established so far in Tanzania.

“Before joining the club, I had no future plans. I did not know how to control my emotions, make decisions, solve problems and choose my friends. Through this club I received various kinds of information and also life skills training in beautification and salon operations”, she said.

Jackline is one of over 1,190 young women in Tanzania that have received livelihoods training so far, choosing from a menu of training options including running a beauty salon. After her training, Jackline took her first loan of 150,000 Tanzanian schillings ($107) and started a salon business. With her second loan of 250,000 schillings, ($179) she expanded her business successfully, and it now earns profits of up to 150,000 schillings ($107) per month.

With your support, Jackline is more than a business owner. She's a role model for other girls in her community. Or in Jackline's words, “Now I am aware of many things and I’m trying to make my friends aware as well.”

May 3, 2013

Celebrating education

An annual function at a BRAC School in Lasbela
An annual function at a BRAC School in Lasbela

There is only one program design element that cuts across BRAC's vast portfolio: community ownership. If communities don't step up, for one reason or another, BRAC's programs falter.

So BRAC's Education Program in Pakistan was thrilled this spring, as students and their families came together for their annual functions. These public ceremonies, which happen school-by-school beginning in the middle of March, celebrate graduates and celebrate the value that education brings to communities where it remains commonplace to pull children out of school when they reach the same level of education as their parents.

It was a great reminder that community ownership isn't just an abstract program design element--it's also the sights and sounds of daughters, sons, mothers, fathers and teachers all singing, clapping, cheering the progress they're making together.

An annual function at a BRAC School in Lasbela
An annual function at a BRAC School in Lasbela

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