The Sreepur Village in Bangladesh has been celebrating 30 remarkable years with a host of activities and events which we are delighted to share with you in pictures.
The Sreepur Village, Shishu Polli Plus, was established at Sreepur in 1989 on a 15-acre site and has over the last 30 years, successfully re-integrated 897 mothers and 3043 children back into the community. The charity still strongly believes that poverty should not separate mothers from their children and in doing so continues to empower vulnerable women so that more families can gain a better quality of life for the future.
We would like to take this opportunity to share with you the story of how a visit to an orphanage of abandoned children in Bangladesh evolved into the development of The Sreepur Village (Shishu Polli Plus).
It was in 1977 after visiting the orphanage, that the current Chair of Trustees of SPP, Trisha Silvester, set-up the UK registered charity to support the work of the Canadian Charity ‘Families for Children’ (FFC) to fund their work. Following this, in the early 80s Patricia Kerr, the founder/overseas director of The Sreepur Village started voluntary work at FFC whilst working for British Airways as a flight attendant. In 1989, moved by the plight of the abandoned children and women, Pat and her British Airways colleagues decided to do something to extend help and fundraise. That something over the years has grown into a thriving learning organisation – The Sreepur Village – which focuses heavily on humanism, secularism and women empowerment.
For 30 years, Pat Kerr and her team have remained focused on how best to ensure capacity, voice, opportunities and dignity to the beneficiary population (impoverished and vulnerable women with dependent children) using Maslow’s hierarchy of needs as a theoretical base for designing programmes. Throughout this challenging journey, commitment from the trustees, sponsors, fundraisers, donors, partners and the private sector to The Sreepur Village’s ideas and actions has been instrumental in maintaining positive momentum.
The 30th Anniversary celebrations commenced with a day-long programme at Sreepur, Gazipur, the theme of which was Empowerment, Independence and Dignity.
Long-standing donors both local and overseas, trustees, well-wishers, government and other officials, and former beneficiaries of The Sreepur Village all attended this magnificent celebration.
The programme included an inauguration, an introduction to the founding staff, a presentation on our success stories, speeches and an evening of cultural activities. Following the initial opening celebrations, The Sreepur Village invited alumni for a day of activities.
While the anniversary festivities are coming to a close in Bangladesh, in the UK we are looking forward to announcing soon how we plan to celebrate with our UK supporters. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our supporters in enabling us to be able to celebrate 30 remarkable years and, over the next few months, look forward to sharing with you a number of success stories.