It's my pleasure to introduce the second guest post of this blog's history, which comes from a member of one of Fordham's newest initiatives: the Fordham-BRAC Task Force. I have seen these guys present twice now, and I can honestly say that they are an amazing group of people, and I am very excited to hear about their work in the future.
As members of the Fordham University community, students are always looking for ways to be actively engaged in the Jesuit tradition of service and outreach that serves as the backbone of this institution. So when GSAS recently launched a project to work with BRAC USA to create a public awareness campaign, several students immediately jumped to the task. What developed was a task force of ten members who are working to create a campaign that highlight’s BRAC’s commitment to creating better opportunities for others.
BRAC (first known as the Bangladesh Rehabilitation Assistance Committee) was created in 1972, after the end of Bangladesh’s War of Liberation. Originally meant to support the Bangladeshi population, BRAC has now expanded to over nine countries globally, while also supporting other nonprofit organizations around the world (which is why BRAC is no longer an acronym). BRAC’s work has been so widespread that the organization is currently the largest non-profit developmental organization in the world, with well over 100,000 employees. BRAC aims to empower the population of the locations they serve, so that those people are able to meet their full potential. By teaming up with BRAC, the Fordham Task Force hopes to bring awareness to the organization, specifically by creating a campaign focused on BRAC’s work in Tanzania. This awareness campaign is centered on the Empowerment and Livelihood for Adolescents Program (ELA), which aims to empower girls, aged 13-20, to make a difference in their own lives as well as in the lives of others. This summer, members of the team will be creating a mini-documentary that will highlight this ELA program in Tanzania, as well as show the similarities and differences between Tanzanian and American youth. The team will be collecting stories and information from adolescents in the United States while two task-force members will travel to Tanzania to get more information from the girls in that country.
Last Friday, the members of the BRAC taskforce were honored by GSAS for their work on the project at the annual Awards Ceremony. I urge you all to help me in supporting and congratulating my fellow members of the BRAC Task Force on their work:
Minhajul Meje (Task Force Coordinator)
Kathleen Adams (Team Liaison)
Ethics and Society
Humanities and Sciences
Elections and Campaign Management
The final documentary will be screened on campus to different members of the Fordham community this coming fall. We invite you to learn more about BRAC online, and more about the BRAC ELA Program in Tanzania specifically. Be sure to watch for more updates from the Task Force in the upcoming future!
Kirk Dobson is a Fordham GSAS student in the Political Science department and a BRAC Task Force Member.