Source- The Daily Star

Project Oxygen 3.0: An initiative of Give Bangladesh Foundation in Strengthening the Coast

15th September 2023 

Give Bangladesh Foundation (GBF) executed ‘Project Oxygen 3.0,’ an event to plant 3000 trees in Shyamnagar Upazila of Satkhira, a salinity-affected coastal area on Friday, September 15, 2023. 

Across 35 different spots, which were mostly public institutions, diverse varieties of salinity-endured trees including Kadbel, Amloki, Debdaru, Lomb, Mehogini, Rongon, Mango, Alokananda, Neem, Sofeda, and Guava were planted. LEDARS, a local NGO of Satkhira was the implementation partner of the event. The event was supported by the Engineer Abul Kalam Trust and KKF.

The program has brought together the two key driving forces for the future and for change, the children and the youths of Bangladesh. Students from Manarat International School and Hermann Gmeiner School & College were actively involved in awareness generation for the event. At the same time, the fundraising efforts were driven by young volunteers from Give Bangladesh Foundation. The on-field part of the event was successfully pulled off with the enormous effort of local youths, who actively engaged themselves in protecting their locality.

8th-grade Hermann Gmeiner student Mafruha Taskin was a Student Ambassador for the event, who raised awareness in peer groups to fight climate change effects. She is immensely proud of the monumental role she played in the backend. “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime volunteering experience. So fortunate to be a part of such a lovely initiative at this young age”, she revealed.

Key Accounts Coordinator of GBF, Fariha Ahmed, expressed the resolution of Give Bangladesh Foundation in battling climate change. “Bangladesh needs planned tree-plantation efforts, and coastal areas adjacent to Sunderbans have always been the most prior focus for us”, she remarked.

Co-Founder and president of the organization, Mohammad Saifullah Mithu, thanked the partners of the initiative for joining hands in this impactful campaign. He commented, “The execution of Project Oxygen 3.0 shows that combined forces of like-minded organizations can be harnessed to address development challenges in the most efficient manner”. 

The Executive Director of LEDARS, Mohan Kumar Mondal committed to keep working for the underserved Climate-vulnerable people of Satkhira. Sifat-E-Azam, Executive Director of KKF, a key partner of the program, echoed their commitment to continued collaborative efforts to bring positive outcomes for vulnerable communities. Rabiul Islam, Vice-president of Engineer Abul Kalam Trust expressed his elation to join hands in a multi-stake partnership from a family organization.

The trees planted will be owned by local residents as an incentive for them to protect and nurture the greenery in their community. The primary objective of ‘Project Oxygen’ is twofold: to reforest the vulnerable coastal region, fortify it against future natural disasters, and to empower underprivileged locals while safeguarding the environment. By planting thousands of trees, this event strives to fortify these coastal areas, making them more resilient to future natural calamities. Additionally, it combats environmental degradation caused by deforestation and offers fruit-bearing trees to the local population, thereby addressing their nutritional needs.

As a part of the Emergency Response campaign of GBF, Project Oxygen was launched in 2020, when we planted 49,000 trees in 49 minutes commemorating the 49th year of independence in the coastal areas of Koyra upazila, Khulna as a proactive measure against natural disasters. Following the event, through Project Oxygen 2.0, 1600 trees were planted in Dumuria, Khulna in 2021. Through Project Oxygen, Give Bangladesh plans to plant half a million trees in Bangladesh in the next 10 years.

Give Bangladesh Foundation was established in 2018 to provide a unique pathway for the people of Bangladesh, to get involved in the development of the country through philanthropy and volunteering.

Other than the Emergency Response Campaign, the foundation has five curated projects. Project Folon has developed a multi-prong approach to address the issues faced by farmers, with access to capital, agricultural training, development of market access and training on personal finances forming the core pillars of our intervention. Project Pothchola works with the children of sex workers to help them realize their potential and integrate with mainstream society. Project Ombu explores solutions that will ensure adequate availability of drinkable water in the areas of Bangladesh where the water crisis is acute. Project Konna is working to ensure that the women living in the rural areas of Bangladesh are aware of and have access to a safe menstrual hygiene management system. Project Lorai, has begun working with the goal of improving the economic well-being of women from marginalized and deprived communities.

Give Bangladesh Foundation urges every individual and organization to be a representative for change, and is open to any partnership that fosters an impactful initiative. 

For inquiries, please contact:

Fariha Ahmed
Key Accounts Coordinator, Give Bangladesh Foundation