During one of its visits to Bangladesh, Teach the World Foundation saw the dismal state of affairs of Ukhiya, one of the poorest upazilas in Bangladesh. Located in the Cox’s Bazar district, as one of the host communities (HCs), Ukhiya has been overwhelmed by the influx of the Rohingya people. The number of Rohingya in shelter camps has exceeded the total population of the main HCs of Ukhiya and Teknaf. To support the local people affected by the influx of refugees, TTWF decided to contribute to the education and learning of children in the locality. In August 2018 a program was launched in a local school with the support of OBAT Helpers. 25 children, aged five to seven years, are enrolled in the program and are learning mathematics, English, and Bangla through the high-engagement digital curriculum.
Since the 1971 civil war between East and West Pakistan that gave rise to the independent nation of Bangladesh, 300,000 stranded Pakistanis have survived as a forgotten population in refugee camps around the country. Even 45 years after the end of the war, these families still live in harsh conditions in slums and makeshift camps. Half are children under the age of 15. Less than 10% of these children have the opportunity to gain an education and move out of poverty. Many of the older children have to work in menial jobs, in order to help their families.
OBAT is on the ground at multiple refugee camps in Bangladesh, providing medical clinics, micro-lending programs, schools and job-training opportunities.