Bangladesh is one of the world's most densely populated countries, with around 160 million people packed into a delta sized 130,168 square kilometers, which empties into the Bay of Bengal. The geographical setting of Bangladesh coupled with climate change makes it subject to catastrophic natural disasters. In particular, Bangladesh’s 600km coastline is one of the most disaster-prone regions in the world.

Poverty is deep and widespread; almost half of the population lives on less than one dollar per day. We view all our work in Bangladesh through the lens of making communities more resilient and enhancing the leadership contribution made by women.

Oxfam in Bangladesh

Oxfam’s involvement in Bangladesh began in 1970 assisting the then cyclone victims and supporting the people of Bangladesh during the Liberation War in 1971. For our work in 1971 Oxfam was one of only three organizations honored as a Friend of the Bangladesh Liberation War in 2012.

We work with a wide range of partners including civil society organizations, NGOs, media organizations, foreign and local universities, private sector companies and different levels of government. We see a particular role for Oxfam as a network facilitator between the wide range of power holders and poor people in Bangladesh.

Focus of our work

Our objectives in Bangladesh:

Gender and Women’s Leadership

Reducing gender based violence and discrimination and increasing women’s participation and leadership. As a result by 2019 more women in Bangladesh will describe themselves as free to make meaningful decisions concerning themselves, their families, their community and their country. They will believe they are empowered to do this through their realization of their rights, their control of resources, their freedom from violence, and their access to, and influence within, social and political space.

Economic Justice & Resilience

Ensuring that the most marginalized women and men will have increased their income and livelihood security and will be more resilient to climatic and economic shocks and stresses.

Humanitarian Capacity Building and Response

Oxfam and partners will reduce suffering and loss caused by natural or man-made disasters by preparing for, and operationalizing effective, rapid, gender sensitive responses. As a result vulnerable women, men, boys and girls will benefit from more appropriate, effective and engendered humanitarian responses, resulting in reduced negative impact and more rapid long-term recovery, due to improved preparedness, policies and practices of government and humanitarian actors.