National and local non-governmental organisations (NGOs)have provided around Tk155.87 crore in support for Covid-19 response from March 5 to May 25 this year, according to a survey.
The support was provided to 49 districts by 212 national and local NGOs. Of the amount, Tk140.22 crore came from donors and Tk15.67 crore from own funds of the NGOs.
Among the NGOs, 56.1 percent were non-microfinance institutions, and 43.9 percent microfinance institutions.Their support has reached 14.8 million beneficiaries.
The survey was conducted by seven platforms of national and local NGOs –BD-CSO Process, Association of Development Agencies in Bangladesh, Federation of NGOs in Bangladesh, Disaster Forum, National Alliance of Humanitarian ActorsBangladesh, Network for Information, Response and Preparedness Activities on Disaster, and Cox's Bazar CSO NGO Forum.
The objective of the survey was to collect information on the role of the Bangladeshi NGOs in fighting the Covid-19 crisis. The findings were published in a virtual press conference on Sunday.
The major areas supported by the NGOs were awareness programmes(37.1 percent), food (32.2 percent), health (19.2 percent) and cash assistance (11.5 percent).
Soap and hand wash support was at the top, followed by emergency food items and masks, leaflet, and personal protective equipment.
The highest response was recorded in Rangpur division (61.3 percent), followed by Chattogram (13.7 percent) and Dhaka (12.7 percent), and the rest in other divisions.
The NGOs suggested the government could involve national and local NGOs – who are working as frontline service providers – in local coordination and enable them to act as service providers on behalf of the government.
They said the donor community and the United Nations agencies should provide direct funding for national and local NGOs to enable the latter to continue the support, while the role of international NGOs and the United Nations agencies should only be limited to monitoring and technical assistance.
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, executive director of Coast Trust, moderated the press conference and Abdul Latif Khan, technical advisor to the National Alliance of Humanitarian ActorsBangladesh, presented the survey report.
Other speakers at the conference were Dr Ehsanur Rahman of the National Alliance of Humanitarian Actors Bangladesh, Nayeem Gowhar Warha of Disaster Forum, Abu Morshed Chowdhury of Cox's Bazar CSO NGO Forum, Hasina Akhter Mita of Network for Information, Response and Preparedness Activities on Disaster, Jashim Uddin of Association of Development Agencies in Bangladesh, and Rafiqul Islam of Federation of NGOs in Bangladesh.