Promoting self-reliance for rural communities
Founded in 2016, Dreamunteers is a social organisation that intends to create a platform for rural communities to have sustainable and self-reliant ways of living. The founder of the organisation, Nibrasul Alam, a student of Notre Dame College, was selected for the Sir Fazle Hasan Abed Ashoka Young Changemakers 2020.
Being an active member of the Bangladesh Scouts, Nibrasul had the opportunity to explore several hill districts and remote villages. The experience shaped his understanding about the lives of the people in such areas. He discovered that many were migrating to urban areas in search of work, since they were unable to find employment in their own communities.
"The main aim of Dreamunteers is to help people in rural areas to meet their basic needs independently. We want to make their dreams come true," Nibrasul shared. Dreamunteers involves local leaders, maps out the everyday challenges of rural communities and assesses the willingness of communities to adapt to different environments for their project plans.
They have facilitated the education of over 120 children in rural regions. They have also ensured that rural communities have access to clean drinking water and proper sanitation. Since its inception, Dreamunteers has provided their services to 1,500 people across the country.
Their enterprise, Arora Agri Industries, has a cheese factory in Chattogram, which helps in building employment opportunities. "Arora will not be confined to just the cheese factory as we intend to expand and include a biofloc fish plant, factories for agro food, dairy, fertilisers and pesticides," said Yasir Bin Taleb, Co-founder, Dreamunteers.
The organisation's other enterprises include NURI Rural Garments, a clothing brand and industry employing more than 100 people. Additionally, their 4X Rural Development Research Centre is currently working on a plan to develop neglected rural areas.
Dreamunteers also runs a medicine bank that provides free medicines to underprivileged communities. Their Project Change 365 surveys villages to effectively identify major problems, and propose solutions. "We are also working on a speedboat ambulance service in some islands, and conducting medical camps in inaccessible hill districts," added Nibrasul.
The author is a medical student and a freelance journalist who likes reading, scribbling, and blogging. Email: [email protected].