28 March, 2022, Dhaka, Bangladesh | A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing ceremony was held today in the Country Office of Marks & Spencer (M&S) at Gulshan-2, Dhaka. The MoU has been signed between CARE Bangladesh and M&S to strengthen the partnership and extend the collaboration to improve the lives of factory workers working in Gazipur. The main objective of this MoU is to bring all the workers (approximately 100,000) of 34 Factories of M&S under vaccine protection by strengthening the ongoing COVID-19 activities and working together to build a quality health, nutrition, Family Planning (FP), and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) information & service system for the factory workers and their communities. Moreover, CARE Bangladesh will use an online-based Emergency Communications Management (ECM) platform to accelerate the dissemination of critical information on the importance of vaccination to factory workers at scale. This will be done by using text, voice messages, WhatsApp, and establishing a hotline to answer questions that address rumours on COVID-19 vaccines, and facilitating vaccine readiness and registration.
The ceremony was graced by Ramesh Singh, Country Director, CARE Bangladesh and Shwapna Bhowmick, Bangladesh Country Manager, M&S. The event started with a welcome speech and a brief update on the vaccination coverage of the 34 M&S factory workers in Gazipur facilitated and supported by CARE Bangladesh, given by Dr. Ikhtiar Uddin Khandaker, Director, Health Program, CARE Bangladesh. Following the update, Mr. Mizanur Rahman, Senior Social Compliance Manager, M&S shared his remarks regarding this occasion and the overall partnership of CARE Bangladesh.
On this joyous occasion, Ramesh Singh expressed his gratitude and appreciation for both the parties to formally come together and improve the community further by implementing activities that align with CARE’s mission and vision. He said, “CARE has been in this country even before the liberation war and has been involved in almost every aspect of development sector while working together with communities, NGOs and Government’s agency beyond context. To have impactful outcomes, we must share similar mindsets and objectives with our partners. It gives me immense pleasure that M&S is one such partner of ours. I firmly believe that this partnership will not be a transactional one. Rather, it will be based on integrity, transparency, and effective relationship building.”
While expressing her thoughts on this event, Shwapna Bhowmick echoed similar opinions, saying, “The coming days will be difficult, however, with many opportunities. Unless we are ready to change our perspectives, the change won’t come at large. We need to venture new ideas and initiatives together, which requires the mentality of taking risks from both ends. I hope this partnership would be fruitful enough to emulate the ventures in our other factories countrywide.”
The event successfully ended with the signing and exchange of MoU between both parties in the presence of the respective team members. Among others, Mohammad Hafijul Islam, Sr. Technical Coordinator (Team Lead), Urban Health, CARE Bangladesh, Rashed Mahmud, Social Compliance Manager, M&S, Nusrat Daud Pritha, Acting Head, Communications and PR Unit, CARE Bangladesh, Monisha Mafruha, Technical Coordinator, Urban Health, CARE Bangladesh and Tanzin Kibria Labonno, Sr. Technical Officer-M&E, CARE Bangladesh were present.
About CARE: Founded in 1945, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty with special focus on working with girls and women. CARE currently works in over 100 countries. In today’s Bangladesh, CARE started its journey in 1949 and our current programs are focused around Women and Girls’ Empowerment, Health and Nutrition, Extreme Rural Poverty Reduction, and Humanitarian and Resilience. Last year, CARE in Bangladesh reached out to 7.5 million people directly and 32.08 million people indirectly with 61 projects/initiatives where 56% of our program participants were women.
For more information:
Nusrat Daud Pritha, Acting Head, Communications and PR Unit, CARE Bangladesh
Email: Nusratdaud.firstname.lastname@example.org, Mobile: +88-01711731055