My recent visit to Bangladesh was incredible, a truly memorable experience to last a lifetime. I visit Bangladesh relatively frequently, at least once or twice a year, but my visit in September 2019 will always be the most eventful and remarkable.
For those of you who don’t know, I am involved with the Conservative Party here in the UK and my travel to Bangladesh was related to the organisation known as the Conservative Friends of Bangladesh (CFOB). The CFOB is engaged in Bangladesh to enhance the mutual bilateral relations as well as being involved in multi-faceted philanthropic and charitable activities in conjunction with other local NGOs.
Through CFOB UK, we organised our annual trip to Bangladesh with Members of Parliament from the UK House of Commons and scores of CFOB members. The team was led by our President, Mrs Anne Main MP and accompanied by Paul Scully MP, the Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party, and Bob Blackman MP.
The guests from the UK joined in various activities in Sylhet including cleaning the bank of the River Surma, a spectacular event and a real eye opener for local people. For the first time in the city’s history, British MPs engaged themselves in Sylhet - sweeping the roads and plugging the river front with discarded litter.
They also undertook many other activities around the areas of poverty elevation, the rehabilitation of destitute children and education programmes for impoverished young people.
These were our self-funded projects and we have not received any funding from any sources.
As the General Secretery of the CFOB, I personally had to work relentlessly with the rest of the executive committee over the last year to accumulate enough funds to organise the trip.
By Naz Islam