Lessons From Bangladesh: Partnership, Feedback & Impact

Last April, an 8-story garment factory collapsed in Bangladesh, killing more than 1,000 people and injuring more than 2,500. Many of them had lost arms, legs, or both. Jolkona’s campaign to fund artificial limbs for the survivors of this unprecedented disaster raised close to $25,000 in 5 days.

Last month, Nadia and I visited Bangladesh and met with some of the survivors. One of the women had been trapped for three days under the rubble, finally cutting off her own arm to free herself. She was 21 years old. Thanks to Jolkona donors, our partner BRAC has fitted her with an artificial arm, a monthly allowance higher than her old income from the factory, and the resources to start her own business.

Nadia and I were thrilled to see Jolkona’s impact in action. There are three components to this success:

  1. Partnership: BRAC  is one of the largest NGOs in the world and one of Jolkona’s founding partners. Over the years we have developed a very strong relationship with BRAC, allowing us to partner with them and respond quickly to disasters in Bangladesh and the other countries it serves.
  2. Feedback:  Jolkona has always prioritized direct feedback to the donor. We were able to assure donors that they would receive reports of the specific people helped by their funds, leading to a high volume of donations.
  3. Impact: Working together and with others on the ground, Jolkona and BRAC had a true impact on this disaster relief effort.

I believe this model can be adopted for other types of social work, not just disaster response. What do you think?

To continue making a true impact in Bangladesh, check out Jolkona’s LiftBangla projects.

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