An awareness meeting was held at Charuipara in Kuhalong Union of Bandarban Sadar Upazila with stakeholders at the community level of Our Lives, Our Health, Our Futures (OLHF) project.
Karibari Shweuching Marma of Charuipara was present as the president at a meeting held at Charuipara Youth Association Center on Tuesday (July 21). OLHF Project Director Dinendra Tripura, Ananya Kallyan Sanghaton, Sumit Banik; Master Trainer of Bangladesh Nari Progati Sangha and Mayaiprue Marma; President of Charuipara Mahila Samiti were present as special guests. Trainer Yeisanu Marma facilitated the whole meeting.
Welcoming remarks and project activities, goals, and objectives were presented by Project Coordinator Myamesing Marma. Master Trainer Sumit Banik highlighted the thematic areas of the project and the importance of involving adolescent girls and young women in the Girls Club. Mesingnu Marma spoke as the representative of the young women; Ukhaiymong Marma spoke as the representative of the youth.
Project Director Dinendra Tripura said in the meeting, “We did not grow up the way we were supposed to. In our time our guardians or ancestors were not even aware of that. They weren’t health-conscious, but now that’s not the context. Today’s adolescent is tomorrow’s mother. If she is not health-conscious from now on, we cannot expect a healthy generation in the future. Compared to other areas of Bangladesh, the reproductive health condition of adolescents and young women in Bandarban and the Chittagong Hill Tracts is not satisfactory. Therefore, AKS is implementing this project in Bandarban Sadar in collaboration with Simavi and Bangladesh Nari Progati Sangha with the funding of the European Union. Under this project, we want to increase the health awareness and life skills of adolescents and young women in this area. Because many people in our society are not aware of the physical and mental changes that take place from childhood to adolescence. As a result, they face many social and environmental barriers at that time. We want to overcome all these obstacles through this project and play a role in building a beautiful life for them. The more we care for our adolescents, the more prosperous generations we will have in the future. And the active participation of all of you is very much needed for the successful implementation of this project. From now on, through this project, they will sit with your daughters at regular intervals. They will learn something to build their health and happy life, which will play a role in shaping their beautiful and healthy life. So there is no substitute for the overall cooperation of everyone present in their regular visit to the Girls Club and in the implementation of the activities.”
Mesingnu Marma, a representative young women stated, “I think girls need to get out of the thought of being confined to the kitchen. Girls can develop their talents if they get equal opportunities and benefits. It is now proven. So we need to change our mindset. And in this case, the men of the society have to come forward with the attitude of cooperation.”
A total of 25 people including mother, father, brother, and other dignitaries were present at the meeting using necessary health safety materials. The meeting was also attended by Uswehla Marma, Monitoring & Evaluation Officer, AKS OLHF Project, Khyai Khyai Nu Marma and Bu Aung Marma Program Facilitator, among others.