Has there been any improvement in the villages over the last ten years? Answer to the question is: of course there has been. Most of the villages of Bangladesh now have primary schools and the villagers are getting the facilities of piped water and electricity. The village people are no more depended on farming; they are engaging themselves in various occupations and a good number of them have solar panel on their rooftop. But all these improvements have not come overnight. It took time but the change has happened. And the corporate world has played a vital role.
The villages of Bangladesh have made a remarkable progress in every aspect. Here are some to point out:
• Bangladesh has made a good progress in life expectancy and behind this the improvement of life leading of the village people played a major role as the villagers are much more concern now about their health.
• Lack of family planning has been a major problem for Bangladesh especially in villages for a long time. But now the villagers are getting pills and advices about family planning from the government workers, volunteers as well as private sector.
• Family planning also helped the women to achieve better health and more importantly self-sufficiency. This has also worked to reduce poverty.
• Women education has always been a major concern and the government worked a lot to increase literacy rate in villages. Players from the corporate world also worked hard in this sector. As a result, the village girls are carrying a higher rate than the village boys in attending school.
• Now village women are not only working inside their houses, they are coming to cities to find jobs to get a better living and also to help their parents. Companies like Beximco Group, Apex Group and Square Groups are recruiting a large number of women.
• The Grameen Bank played an important role by providing small loans to village women. Microcredit got a new role of poverty alleviation and it was a very successful attempt taken by Grameen Bank.
• The rice growers in the villages are growing two harvests a year now. This revolution is reducing poverty and also accelerating the country’s economy.
• A large number of village people are now working abroad, mostly in the Middle East. Bangladesh got a remittance of about $1150 million (Jan, 2016). Migrant workers send their remittances to their family members in the villages they came from.
• Bangladesh government is quite friendly to NGOs (Non Government Organization), and the NGOs are helping the village people to come out of illiteracy, health issues and many other important matters.
• The villagers of Bangladesh are now in touch with mobile phone, satellite, digital devices, internet and many more digital accessories, thanks to big corporate groups. The villages are becoming digital under the ICT (Information and Communication Technology) project taken by the government.
The improvements in villages are remarkable but there are still rooms to grow. The government and corporate sector need to contribute more for additional improvements. The villagers will soon learn how to walk alongside the city people. The time is near!