Facebook conducted a training to equip Building Resources Across Communities (Brac) and Bangladesh Red Crescent Society with the critical digital capabilities to ensure that emergency response organisations are able to reach out flood affected population, potential donors and volunteers.
The training aimed at building out an outreach campaign and utilise Facebook's tools and products to assist communities in the country, said a Facebook's local agency press release Thursday.
Facebook also supported Red Crescent Society and Brac by helping to promote and amplify their content on crisis response among various groups.
Md Ali Reza Mazid, additional secretary to the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief, said "When a global platform like Facebook has come forward to assist the flood-affected people of Bangladesh, it is going to be even easier for us to engage more people in this. I strongly appreciate this collaboration between Bangladesh Red Crescent Society, Brac and Facebook in disaster response in Bangladesh."
Sajedul Hasan, director to Brac Humanitarian Programme, thanked Facebook for partnering with them.
He said, "Post-flood rehabilitation is no less challenging than during-flood operations, considering shortage of work, drinking water and disease outbreaks. We appreciate the gracious support from Facebook in scaling up our efforts in the worst affected communities."
Many experts consider this year's flood as the longest one in terms of duration since 1998, directly affecting 33 districts and the lives of 5.5 million people. The sufferings have deepened as it has coincided with the Covid-19 pandemic, causing millions of people to slip into dire poverty.
Brac launched its emergency response with its own fund immediately after the flood had hit the country, in coordination with the government and other national and international organisations.
It disseminated early warning messages by incorporating Covid-19 preventive measures and distributed dry food and oral saline, including cash assistance to 50,000 families.
In the meantime, Red Crescent Society mobilized more than 1,000 volunteers in 36 districts and provided essential services to more than 560,000 affected families.
Red Crescent volunteers also work closely with district administration and share useful information with affected populations to save their lives during the flood.
Md Belal Hossain, director to Disaster Risk Management, said, "With the partnership of Facebook, we provided useful and relevant information to the affected population and look forward to fostering our response efforts for this year's flood, as well as be better prepared with appropriate knowledge to use Facebook platform for the next one."
Facebook's Public Policy Director for South Asia Ashwani Rana said, "In times of crisis, people turn to Facebook to check on loved ones and get updates. They also turn to Facebook to offer their assistance."
He said that they were supporting and partnering with both Brac and Red Crescent Society to help amplify their outreach campaigns to better serve the needs of the flood victims in Bangladesh.