Friendship, a Bangladeshi NGO, has handed over 1,500 face masks to the beneficiaries of the Luxembourg Red Cross social grocery stores.
The face masks were made by the poorest and most isolated char land community people in Bangladesh, according to a press release.
The face masks were delivered recently in the presence of Runa Khan, founder and executive director of Friendship, and Luc Scheer, member of the board of directors of the Luxembourg Red Cross, in Luxembourg.
The char land community in Bangladesh are weaving and sewing the masks which is also a new income opportunity for them. It's an initiative for the deprived community by Friendship, it adds.
In this time of health crisis, a large number of women with sewing machines have been mobilised and pre-cut fabrics for masks have been given to them.
The mask fabrics were made in Friendship weaving centres using natural dyes. Quality being paramount, the design is inspired by the standard design of Japanese masks and thanks to the superposition of three layers of cotton, the expected efficiency is ensured.
The workers are paid with dignity for their work at a time when the health situation, now coupled with heavy flooding, accentuates the situations of extreme poverty in the country, reads the statement.
Each of the masks was sold for around Tk400 (in Bangladeshi currency) to the Luxembourg Red Cross and the mask makers will directly be benefitted from the price.
Runa Khan explains, "There is a very strong feeling of solidarity and generosity that is part of the Bengal culture heritage. When crisis arise – and Bangladeshis frequently face crisis and disasters – it is important to have people who are active in helping others. And it feels good to witness, here in Luxembourg, that this sense of solidarity and generosity knows no borders."
Luc Scheer, member of the board of directors of the Luxembourg Red Cross, warmly thanked Friendship for this initiative.
He said, "Friendship supports its programmes in Bangladesh while showing solidarity in Luxembourg. Thanks to this operation, the beneficiaries of the Red Cross social grocery stores will have free masks at their disposal."
The success of this operation with both individuals and companies will enable Friendship to hand over an additional 3,500 masks in September, adds the release.