Educo and Uttaran, jointly with the support of European Union and UNOPS have been implementing the project “Strengthening the capacity of those displaced by disasters and climate-related causes to cope with adverse situations”, in two separate locations of Shyamnagar and Satkhira Municipality.

As a part of this project, a research findings-sharing event on “Impact of Climate Change on livelihoods & its alternative solutions for the people living in southwest coastal & slum areas in Bangladesh” was successfully organized by Educo Bangladesh- a Spain based international development and humanitarian NGO, took place at Six Seasons Hotel, Gulshan-2, on Monday (February 20).

Mijanur Rahman, DG- Department of Disaster Management joined the function as the chief guest. The event was attended by representatives from European Union, IOM, different INGOs, NGOs, project participants, and journalists.

The event started with the opening remarks from the Country Director- Abdul Hamid, Educo Bangladesh. He said “Being one of the most climate-vulnerable countries, the people who counter and adapt to climate change every day are the real frontline heroes. We salute them.”

Kazi Abdul Kadir, Manager- Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change at Educo Bangladesh, presented an overview of the project as well as recognized the efforts of the technical partners Footsteps and Khulna University. The project aims to enhance the disaster and climate change adaptation capacity of the population in Shyamnagar of Satkhira, thereby decreasing damage levels and reducing migration to urban areas. As a part of this project, an action was research conducted by the Environmental Science Discipline of Khulna University focusing on identifying alternative livelihood solutions for climate adaptation of internally displaced people living in Satkhira slums and those who are at risk of internal displacement due to natural disasters in Shyamnagar.

At the event, the research findings were shared by Dr. Abdullah Harun Chowdhury, PhD, Professor, Environmental Science Discipline, Khulna University. The major findings of the research demonstrate the lack of climate resilient economic livelihood options which forces the people of Shyamnagar to be displaced. The research has recommended some alternative solutions such as introducing saline tolerant variety of agriculture, developing small businesses, and capacity building of the climate-vulnerable community to face future climatic shocks and reduce the rate of climate induced displacement.

Following the presentation, an open discussion took place with active participation from all the event attendees. Following to that, the Team Leader of the Delegation of the European Union to Bangladesh, Koen Everaert mentioned, “I hope that the stakeholders including the Government of Bangladesh and development partners will consider the recommendations by the research for their further actions and I hope it will make significant improvements in the lives of people living in dire situations. I can reaffirm that the European Union is committed to work on climate change for both mitigation and adaptation”.

At this point, the Chief Guest of the event the DG- Department of Disaster Management said “To create a smart Bangladesh, smart alternative livelihood options need to be introduced. The alternative livelihood solutions which surfaced from this research need to be spread amongst the people in need and we have to ensure that they are able to use these solutions.”

Jahin Shams Sakkhar, Program Development Specialist of Uttaran, thanked the participants for attending and providing their valuable opinion. Lastly, the event ended with a closing remark from Farzana Khan, Director of Programs, Educo Bangladesh.

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