Category Archives: ALRD

Women’s groups start household gardening in Northern Bangladesh

Woman in Dinajpur practicing homestead gardening. Photo by PROCASUR.

Woman in Dinajpur practicing homestead gardening. Photo by PROCASUR.

Following her participation to ALRD’s training on Mobilization and Leadership Training on People’s Cooperative on 2-3 November 2015, Shapla group leader Jahanare Begum initiated homestead gardening in their village of Mohalbari, Chirirbandar Upazila in Dinajpur District.

Homestead gardening is promoted to women’s groups for them to practice collective farming by utilizing the pieces of land they own. While providing nutrition to their families, this initiative would also send a strong message about their rights to land ownership, access to market, and women-led cooperatives which can improve the livelihood of the rural poor.

ALRD visited Dinajpur on 9-11 January 2016 to monitor the activities of the group members and mobilize them through participatory approach on the future plan of activities for the project supported by PROCASUR entitled, “Strengthening Women’s Empowerment and Livelihood through Access to Land and Market.”

Four women groups – Suravi in Surail village, Swarasoti and Shapla in Mohalbari village, and Jagoron women group in Damoir village are practicing the People’s Initiative or “Gonoprochesta” model through organizing courtyard meeting in a regular basis. Every group has a leader who is responsible to organize a weekly meeting, collect handful of rice as savings, and put it for sale to create their own capital collectively. “It was out of our imagination to save cash money like such amount by using handful of rice,” they shared.

Most of the group members are now practicing organic vegetable gardening in their lots and plan to market these with support of SUSTAIN.

Source: https://www.facebook.com/notes/procasur-asia-pacific/women-groups-start-household-gardening-in-northern-bangladesh/1112531288771668

Rights activists demand judicial probe on land grabbing in Thakurgaon District

Panel of the press conference. Photo by ALRD

Panel of the press conference. Photo by ALRD.

In a press conference organized by ALRD on 8 January 2016 in Dhaka, Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) presented the results of an investigation conducted in October 2015 on the allegations of land grabbing by the lawmakers in Thakurgaon District.

General Secretary of the Vested Property Act Protection Movement Advocate Subrata Chowdhury said that the local ruling MP has already grabbed a portion of land of minorities in Thakurgaon’s Baliadangi upazila along the Indian border. He added that the Thakurgaon-2 MP and his family have set up a 106-acre tea garden, ‘Ranbag Islami Tea Estate Company,’ in the border of the upazila where the 35-acre lands of some 10 Hindu families are located.

Despite the local  MP’s denial of the accusations, rights advocates demanded a judicial probe to the allegation. They urged the authorities to take actions against the people involved in the land grabbing and violence.

News links:

http://newagebd.net/191733/judicial-probe-sought-into-land-grabbing-by-thakurgaon-mp/http://www.thedailystar.net/city/thakurgaon-mp-slammed-land-grabbing-attempt-199243

Training on Gender Equity and Women’s Access to Land

We are posting this update shared by the Association for Land Reform and Development (ALRD).

Participants of the training on “Gender Equality and Women’s Access to Land." Photo by ALRD.

Participants of the training on “Gender Equality and Women’s Access to Land.” Photo by ALRD.

ALRD conducted a training on “Gender Equality and Women’s Access to Land” on 16-21 January 2016 in Dhaka with 25 participants from 13 different partner organizations (11 were women). The five-day-training course was to raise awareness to the partner organizations and their beneficiaries on equal rights of women on land and other natural resources, and on elimination of all forms of discrimination and violence against women.

Ensuring women’s equal rights to land are hindered by gender-blind development policies of the government resulting to land-related violence among women. This training helped the participants to identify the loopholes of the existing legal instruments and practices of multi-dimensional discriminations and violence against women in the society. Although the Constitution of Bangladesh recognizes equal rights for women, several laws-policies and socio-cultural context of the country ignores women’s equal rights in all aspects of life. Through the discussions in the training, participants realized the need to further develop existing laws as well as social patriarchal mind-set to prevent discriminatory practices against women.

Participants committed to disseminate the lessons learned to the beneficiaries and stakeholders in their respective working areas. They will also undertake mobilization activities for creating movements in the local level.

Training course on women’s land rights

We are posting this news shared by the Association for Land Reform and Development (ALRD).

Group exercises of the participants on the rights of the women in property according to inheritance law. Photo: ALRD

Group exercises of the participants on the rights of the women in property according to inheritance law. Photo: ALRD

On 21-26 November 2015, ALRD organized a training course on Women Land Rights and Access to Khas Land under the National Engagement Strategy (NES) supported by the International Land Coalition (ILC) in Dhaka. Twenty two representatives from 12 different partner organizations participated in the training.

The training course was to educate partner organizations and their beneficiaries on women’s right to land and other resources. Participants committed to disseminate the lessons learned to the beneficiaries and stakeholders in their respective working areas. They will also undertake advocacy creating pressure on the government and policy makers for proper implementation of international instruments and conventions ratified by the State regarding women rights including the safeguards stated in the Bangladesh Constitution.

ALRD directs financial award to community projects

We are posting this news shared by the Association for Land Reform and Development (ALRD).

All participants divided into four groups and worked out on collective way of farming by using their little piece of land. Photo: ALRD

All participants divided into four groups and worked out on collective way of farming by using their little piece of land. Photo: ALRD

Following ALRD’s participation in a learning route and innovation plan contest on improving women’s livelihood and access to land in 2014, ALRD, together with SUSTAIN, is channeling the financial resources awarded by Procasur to the community through implementation of the innovation project, “Strengthening Women’s Empowerment and Livelihood through Access to Land and Market.”

On 2-3 November, ALRD and SUSTAIN conducted the Mobilization and Leadership Training on People’s Cooperative in Dinajpur District. Gathering more than 50 participants who are mostly landless women, the 2-day event was to promote women-led cooperatives improving livelihoods of the rural poor.

Participants agreed to a new vision on entering into the People’s Initiative process (or ‘Gonoprochesta’ model) and taking into account social and economic changes. This initiative “promotes sustainable, small scale, family-based organic farming and rural enterprises, and provides direct access to land and market for disadvantaged communities, which in turn contribute to the country’s food security. The Gonoprochesta model empowers women by advocating their recognition at policy making level, and by enabling access to public land and to supporting services such as bank credits, agricultural inputs and technology, information and knowledge, and policy dialogue with government institutions. During the process, women are encouraged to create their own capital collectively, and to invest it in agricultural production of food and organic fertilizers.”

Participants selected their leaders and set a work plan for the next three months which includes saving a handful of rice twice a day and organizing weekly meetings. Their activities will be monitored and guided by the local partner organization of ALRD.

ILC Asia communication planning workshop

Participants of the ILC Asia Communication Planning Workshop

Participants of the ILC Asia Communication Planning Workshop

Aiming for a transparent and accountable course of action, ILC Asia, Association for Land Reform and Development (ALRD), and ANGOC, conducted the ILC Asia Communication Planning Workshop on 8-9 October 2015 in Chiang Mai and developed communication plans in the regional and country level – among the members in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia, India, Nepal, and Philippines.

Facilitated by ANGOC Chairman Emeritus Fr. Francis Lucas, country focal persons drafted communication plans according to the county-level gaps identified. The communication plans will be implemented along with the 3-year ILC Asia workplan focusing on the 10 commitments on people-centered land governance.

ILC Communications Specialist Ashley von Anrep also presented and discussed the use of the newly-created communications platform for the ILC community, the MemberNet.

ILC NES Philippine members can log-in and register at members.landcoalition.org.