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BRAC USA Inc. is one of three non-profits we have vetted for our donors if they are interested in availing tax deductions in the US for their charitable giving (BRAC USA Inc. is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) organization). Any donations made here will be directly transferred to BRAC USA Inc. Nourish Bangladesh does not receive the funds donated here.

Who is BRAC USA?

BRAC is an NGO based in Dhaka, Bangladesh whose mission is to empower people and communities in situations of poverty, illiteracy, disease and social injustice. BRAC started in 1972 as a microfinance institution, and since then has spread throughout the world with multiple projects including direct cash and food transfer projects for the ultra poor, employment assistance, public health endeavors, and joint-programs, such as their popular joint-program with GrameenPhone known as Dakche Amar Desh. While BRAC’s work is varied, the underlying methodology is that they pilot, perfect, and scale all of their projects to ensure efficacy. BRAC is currently prioritizing Covid-19 relief through a food assistance fund and a public health campaign aimed at informing the Bangladeshi public, reducing spread, and preventing death.

 

Highlights 

BRAC is a long-established NGO, well known within Bangladesh and internationally and regularly vetted by assessment organizations. They are able to specifically use donations for Covid-19 relief efforts in all 64 districts of Bangladesh. In addition to focusing on women and girls, they are also notable for serving minority and especially underserved communities, including Rohingya refugees, sex workers, LGBTQ, and the transgender community. 

 

Responses to Vetting Questions

These responses are based on our correspondences with Ms. Ashley M Toombs, Director of External Affairs at BRAC USA, and our independent research of information available on their official website. In particular, we focus on BRAC USA's general activities and their plans for using the funds donated through our fundraising campaign. We researched and asked the same set of standard questions to the other NGOs we vetted as well.

Question: With our donation, what is the geographical spread of the relief recipient (e.g. Dhaka city, rural Mymensingh, etc.)?
Response: BRAC is working on Covid-19 relief efforts across all 64 districts of Bangladesh and your funds would cover our work in all areas.

Question: With our donation, which groups will be helped (e.g. LGBTQ community, Transgender community, street children, Garo indigenous population, sex workers, gypsy community)?
Response: We are applying comprehensive Covid-19 response efforts across the most vulnerable communities in Bangladesh, in both rural and urban areas, with a particular focus on women and girls. In addition, we have designed specialized interventions for other populations that are often the most marginalized including, but not limited to, transgender, LGBTQ, and sex worker communities.
 
Question: With our donation, will you reach out to the Rohingyas?
Response: Yes, we have a comprehensive Covid-19 program in place for the Rohingya camps in Cox's Bazar, as well as the surrounding host communities. We currently have over 2,300 staff on the ground responding and our need for support is increasing daily as the number of Covid-19 cases in the camps continues to increase.
 
Question: Can you give us a price breakdown of how much money is spent towards food relief (e.g. with 1000 taka we offer lentils, rice, onions, and potato for a family of 4 for two weeks) or how much cash is handed to each household (e.g. 1800 taka for each adult in a household)?
Response: We are unable to provide an exact price breakdown of how much money is spent towards food relief, as we provide varying content for different contexts such as families living in rural versus urban areas. In BRAC's initial Covid-19 response, the organization was able to provide an average of two weeks worth of food for a family of four people for $18 USD. 
 
Question: We prefer our donations be used for cash transfers or food relief. Nonetheless, what type of other services, if any, other than food relief or cash transfer will be provided with our donations?
Response: Given the breadth of its work, BRAC cannot guarantee that your donation will be used exclusively for food relief or cash transfers. BRAC is also working on other services, such as providing Cyclone Amphan relief, house repairs, WASH facility repairs, and multipurpose cash support.

Question: Can you ensure our donation money is spent only on food relief or cash transfer? If not, can you provide a list of services our fund will be used for?
Response: No, we cannot. However, BRAC is also providing ongoing healthcare services for both Covid and non-Covid-challenges, supporting health institutions to meet the demand for equipment, modifying education programs and curriculum to continue reaching the children and adolescents who are no longer able to attend school physically, and conducting ongoing awareness and hygiene campaigns.
 
Question: Are you able to customize your food relief or cash transfer efforts based on what we want the donation to be used for?
Response: No, we are not.
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism to ensure transparency of exactly where our money is going?
Response: There is a weekly Situation Reports on our Covid-19 efforts in Cox’s Bazar and in Bangladesh more broadly (https://www.brac.net/covid19/index-en.html). In addition, the progress being made towards BRAC’s Covid-19 fundraising goal in Bangladesh can be tracked here: https://www.brac.net/covid19/en/donate/.
 
Question: Can you give us an estimate of what percentage of our donation is used up in overhead cost i.e. if we donate 1000 USD, what fraction of that will go directly to the poor?
Response: The average overhead on funds that have been sent to BRAC entities via BRAC USA is 5.6% (past three audited fiscal years). Note that this does not include other costs associated with relief distribution (e.g. transportation cost) once it reaches Bangladesh. 
 
Question: Is your organization secular or religiously-affiliated? Does this affect who you serve?
Response: No. BRAC does not affiliate itself with any religion or political parties. Our priority is to serve the most vulnerable populations in all communities across Bangladesh.
 
Question: Can you give us a very brief history of your relevant past efforts that makes you uniquely suited to carry out relief efforts in the face of Covid-19?
Response: BRAC is well-positioned to coordinate effective responses to the outbreak, having deep experience in humanitarian response. we work alongside governments, non-governmental organizations, and communities to build disaster resilience and respond holistically to the effects of both natural and man-made disasters and epidemics. BRAC has immediate avenues for outreach through our network of community health workers, microfinance loan groups, youth empowerment clubs, schools, and other community programming. Though these programs are limited during the outbreak, we are leveraging our existing relationships with beneficiaries, local leaders, partner organizations, and governments to ensure a coordinated response. 
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism in place to ensure that you are aware of which households are getting help from the government, so as to avoid overlapping coverage with government efforts?
Response: BRAC is working closely with the Government of Bangladesh and other implementing partners to increase transparency and digitization efforts to avoid overlapping coverage and allocation of resources. The organization has increased its use of mobile money platforms for the allocation of cash transfers to ensure funds are able to reach the intended people with speed and efficiency.
 
Question: Do you have any results from non-profit assessment organizations (i.e. Givewell)?
Response: For the past five years, BRAC has been named the world’s #1 NGO by Geneva-based NGO Advisors for its impact, innovation, and sustainability (https://www.ngoadvisor.net/ong/brac). BRAC’s work has been awarded and recognized on numerous occasions including the Yidan Prize in 2019, Lego Prize in 2018, Laudato Si’ Award in 2017, World Food Prize in 2015, WISE Prize for Education in 2011, Hilton Humanitarian Award in 2008, and Gates Award for Global Health in 2004. For a more comprehensive list, please see the following: https://www.brac.net/recognition.

 

Updated: 06/08/2020

B Desh Foundation is one of three non-profits we have vetted for our donors if they are interested in availing tax deductions in the US for their charitable givings (B Desh Foundation, Inc. is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) organization). Any donations made here will be directly transferred to B Desh Foundation. Nourish Bangladesh does not receive the funds donated here. 

Who is B Desh Foundation?

The B Desh Foundation is a Northern Virginia-based non-profit charitable organization whose mission is to serve humanity through natural disaster relief, poverty alleviation, health and sanitation, and educational projects. They have undertaken a variety of projects in Bangladesh since 2009, including: childcare centers for Rohingya refugees; funding mobile medical clinics; and Project Women Care, which provides women with primary health care, sanitary hygiene aid, and livelihood initiatives. B Desh Foundation maintains low overhead costs, while ensuring effective usage of funds through independent audits and surveys in order to validate project execution and expenses, as well as a Key Performance Indicator matrix for all projects. In response to Covid-19, they have prioritized food relief and hygiene kit programs.

 

Highlights

B Desh Foundation is noteworthy for maintaining remarkably low overhead cost (4.5%), so your donation would go much farther compared to other registered organizations. They also plan to spend funds in accordance with the donor's intentions, and are able to customize their relief efforts with guidance from us. They also have reach among the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.

 

Responses to Vetting Questions 

hese are the responses we were provided by Mr. Sohel Ahmed, the Chief Executive Officer of B Desh Foundation, with regard to B Desh's general activities and their plans for using the funds donated through our fundraising campaign. We researched and asked the same set of standard questions to the other NGOs we vetted as well. 

Question: With our donation, what is the geographical spread of the relief recipient (e.g. Dhaka city, rural Mymensingh, etc.)?
Response: Dhaka, Mymensingh, Cox’s Bazaar, Sylhet, Kustia, Pabna, Barisal 

Question: With our donation, which groups will be helped (e.g. LGBTQ community, Transgender community, street children, Garo indigenous population, sex workers, gypsy community)?
Response:
 We don’t discriminate based on the color, creed, sexual orientation, or what kind of job anyone does. As a matter of fact we don’t even ask any of these questions to our recipients of our aid.
 
Question: With our donation, will you reach out to the Rohingyas?
Response: Yes we are also reaching out to Rohingya Refugees.
 
Question: Can you give us a price breakdown of how much money is spent towards food relief (e.g. with 1000 taka we offer lentils, rice, onions, and potato for a family of 4 for two weeks) or how much cash is handed to each household (e.g. 1800 taka for each adult in a household)?
Response: For every 1000 taka (roughly 11.90 USD) donated, we provide one household 10 kg rice, 2 kg lentil, 1 liter cooking oil, 2 kg potato, salt, soap 2 pieces, mask 2 pieces, and etc. It also includes packaging and distribution costs.

Question: We prefer our donations be used for cash transfers or food relief. Nonetheless, what type of other services, if any, other than food relief or cash transfer will be provided with our donations?
Response: Hygiene kits

Question: Can you ensure our donation money is spent only on food relief or cash transfer? If not, can you provide a list of services our fund will be used for?
Response: Yes it will be used per donor intention
 
Question: Are you able to customize your food relief or cash transfer efforts based on what we want the donation to be used for?
Response: Yes as long as it is within the budget.
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism to ensure transparency of exactly where our money is going?
Response: We could share the project budget plus expense report after the completion.
 
Question: Can you give us an estimate of what percentage of our donation is used up in overhead cost i.e. if we donate 1000 USD, what fraction of that will go directly to the poor?
Response: Our overhead cost is 4.5%. We are able to keep it low by maintaining zero payroll. We have no full or part time staff, most of the admin works get done by dedicated volunteers which includes B Desh board members, we only take professional services on as needed basis. B Desh's board members have invested (BOD members donated their own money) heavily on building highly efficient IT infrastructure to minimize human interaction. B Desh also recruits high school and college interns for outreach and marketing activities in order to keep the expenses low.
 
Question: Is your organization secular or religiously-affiliated? Does this affect who you serve?
Response: We serve everyone regardless, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, or any other denomination.
 
Question: Can you give us a very brief history of your relevant past efforts that makes you uniquely suited to carry out relief efforts in the face of Covid-19?
Response: Recently in last two weeks we distributed 1000 food packages among Rohingya Refugees and poor households in Ukhia Cox’s Bazaar. In the first week of the May we distributed more than 4000 food packages among the needy families in Dhaka, Mymensingh, Sylhet, Pabna, Barisal and Kushtia districts of Bangladesh.
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism in place to ensure that you are aware of which households are getting help from the government, so as to avoid overlapping coverage with government efforts?
Response: We do coordinate our efforts with the NGO bureau of Bangladesh and local UNO( Upazila Nirbahi Office) and TNO (Thana Nirbahi Office) in order to make sure there is no overlapping efforts going on.
 
Question: Do you have any results from non-profit assessment organizations (i.e. Givewell)?
Response: Not at this time.

 

Updated: 06/08/2020

JAAGO Foundation Inc is one of three non-profits we have vetted for our donors if they are interested in availing tax deductions in the US for their charitable giving (JAAGO Foundation Inc. is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) organization). Any donations made here will be directly transferred to JAAGO Foundation Inc. Nourish Bangladesh does not receive the funds donated here.

Donate to Jaago Foundation Inc on Gofundme

Who is JAAGO Foundation?

Jaago Foundation is an NGO based in Dhaka, Bangladesh whose mission is to create a Bangladesh free of exploitation, discrimination and violence; and to enable it to reach its ultimate socioeconomic potential through education and youth development. Since 2007 they have gone from serving 17 students in a small room to 3,500 students across Bangladesh. In addition to their education support project, they also run Volunteer for Bangladesh, which provides a platform for 35,000 Bangladeshi youth to get involved in volunteerism. Jaago undergoes regular independent audits and has professional accountants ensuring effective usage of funds. Their Covid-19 response strategy includes both food relief and educational programs.

 

Highlights

JAAGO has a very specific and clearly identified relief program, which can feed a family of four for $10 per week. They have guaranteed that 100% of the funds we donate will reach the poor, i.e. there is zero overhead cost for their Covid-19 efforts. They have a fairly wide reach in Bangladesh, with previous experience through their established network of schools, along with volunteers currently active in 32 districts.

 

Responses to Vetting Questions

These responses are based on our correspondences with Ms. Swarupa Haque, Communication Manager, Founders Office, at JAAGO Foundation, and our independent research of information available on their official website. In particular, we focus on JAAGO's general activities and their plans for using the funds donated through our fundraising campaign. We researched and asked the same set of standard questions to the other NGOs we vetted as well.

Question: With our donation, what is the geographical spread of the relief recipient (e.g. Dhaka city, rural Mymensingh, etc.)?
Response: We will reach out to Dhaka City (Rayer Bazar & Karail), Chittagong City, Rajshahi City, rural Gaibandha, rural Madaripur, rural Bandarban, rural Habiganj, rural Dinajpur, rural Rangpur and rural Cox’s Bazar (Teknaf).

Question: With our donation, which groups will be helped (e.g. LGBTQ community, Transgender community, street children, Garo indigenous population, sex workers, gypsy community)?
Response: We help underprivileged families and children in different slums in the above-mentioned areas.

Question: With our donation, will you reach out to the Rohingyas?
Response: Unfortunately, we are unable to reach the Rohingyas at this moment.  
 
Question: Can you give us a price breakdown of how much money is spent towards food relief (e.g. with 1000 taka we offer lentils, rice, onions, and potato for a family of 4 for two weeks) or how much cash is handed to each household (e.g. 1800 taka for each adult in a household)?
Response: We spend 850 Taka (roughly 10 USD) on food for one family of four per week which includes rice (5 kg), atta/flour (2 kg), pulse/dal (1 kg), potato (2 kg), Oil (1 liter), salt (1 kg), common medicine (e.g. Tylenol, oral saline), soap (2 bars), and one bag.
 
Question: We prefer our donations be used for cash transfers or food relief. Nonetheless, what type of other services, if any, other than food relief or cash transfer will be provided with our donations?
Response: The donation will be used for Covid-19 food relief only, and we are distributing dry food instead of transferring cash.

Question: Can you ensure our donation money is spent only on food relief or cash transfer? If not, can you provide a list of services our fund will be used for?
Response: Yes.
 
Question: Are you able to customize your food relief or cash transfer efforts based on what we want the donation to be used for?
Response: We have been distributing the same food package for a long time, and it will be a bit difficult for us to customize the package at this moment. 
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism to ensure transparency of exactly where our money is going?
Response: We will send photos from the distribution sites once the process is complete.
 
Question: Can you give us an estimate of what percentage of our donation is used up in overhead cost i.e. if we donate 1000 USD, what fraction of that will go directly to the poor?
Response: A hundred percent of the donation will go directly to the poor for COVID response.
 
Question: Is your organization secular or religiously-affiliated? Does this affect who you serve?
Response: We are a secular organization, and we ensure promotion of diversity in every sphere of our work and engagement.
 
Question: Can you give us a very brief history of your relevant past efforts that makes you uniquely suited to carry out relief efforts in the face of Covid-19?
Response: JAAGO started responding to the pandemic before it hit Bangladesh. As one of the first organizations to have addressed the Covid-19 situation in Bangladesh, we have been distributing masks and arranging awareness programs since February. We started to distribute food and hygiene products to the underprivileged community beginning in March. We aim to reach out to 30,000 families. JAAGO Foundation is also strictly maintaining social distancing and taking appropriate safety measures. We provide gloves, masks, and PPE to ensure the safety of our employees and volunteers. Distribution locations have strict hygiene protocols, and individuals who are receiving the packages have to wait in designated spots.
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism in place to ensure that you are aware of which households are getting help from the government, so as to avoid overlapping coverage with government efforts?
Response: We are collaborating with local governmental offices (UNO and Chairman) to ensure that there will be no overlapping. We are also collecting information from individuals who are receiving relief packages to ensure no overlapping coverage.
 
Question: Do you have any results from non-profit assessment organizations (i.e. Givewell)?
Response: We have not been taking part in the assessments so far, however, the NGO Bureau will assess the impact and outcome of this Covid-19 food relief program.

 

Updated: 06/08/2020

Thrive is one of several non-profits we have vetted for our donors if they are interested in availing tax deductions in the US for their charitable givings (Thrive is an IRS approved 501(c)(3) organization). Any donations made here will be directly transferred to Thrive. Nourish Bangladesh does not receive the funds donated here. 

Who is Thrive?

Thrive was founded in 2012 by three expatriated moms living in Bangladesh. They saw children starving on the streets and needed to take action. Their mission is to provide nutritious food to school children and their families living in Bangladesh (they also have an operation in the Philippines, which Nourish Bangladesh is not a part of). Their primary expertise in Bangladesh is providing daily healthy meals for children at 10 different schools in the slums of Dhaka and the surrounding areas. To this end, Thrive partners with local farms and a nutrition bar company called Hashi Khushi. As Bangladesh faces the pandemic and widespread flooding, Thrive has started a dry food distribution operation. 

 

Highlights

Thrive ensures that all money donated by Nourish Bangladesh will go directly towards their dry food package distribution efforts in schools with overhead costs funded from other sources. Thrive is the only tax-deductible non-profit that Nourish Bangladesh is working with, that works directly in schools. Thrive plans to customize their relief efforts with guidance from us. Nutrition is one of their top priorities in every package, and they do this while maintaining low costs. They are a Global Giving awardee.

 

Responses to Vetting Questions 

These are the responses we were provided by Ms. Priscilla Heffelfinger, the co-founder and CEO of Thrive, with regard to Thrive's general activities and their plans for using the funds donated through our fundraising campaign. We researched and asked the same set of standard questions to the other NGOs we vetted as well. 

Question: With our donation, what is the geographical spread of the relief recipient (e.g. Dhaka city, rural Mymensingh, etc.)?
Response: Thrive feeds children in Dhaka and remote areas of Bangladesh. We currently feed 13 schools (8 in Dhaka slums and 5 outside the city).

Question: With our donation, which groups will be helped (e.g. LGBTQ community, Transgender community, street children, Garo indigenous population, sex workers, gypsy community)?
Response:
 Children who live or work on the streets of Dhaka or remote areas of Bangladesh.
 
Question: With our donation, will you reach out to the Rohingyas?
Response: Thrive has fed Rohingya children, but is currently not working in the camps.
 
Question: Can you give us a price breakdown of how much money is spent towards food relief (e.g. with 1000 taka we offer lentils, rice, onions, and potato for a family of 4 for two weeks) or how much cash is handed to each household (e.g. 1800 taka for each adult in a household)?
Response: In response to Covid-19, we shifted from daily healthy meals at schools to monthly dry food packs to the students and their families. The Thrive Dry Food packs are 1300 BD/$15 which includes 10 kg of rice, 1 kg of dal (lentils), 5 kg of ahi, 3 kg of onions, 4 pieces of lemons, 850 grams of garlic/mustard/soybeans.

Question: We prefer our donations be used for cash transfers or food relief. Nonetheless, what type of other services, if any, other than food relief or cash transfer will be provided with our donations?
Response: The donation will be used for food relief only, and we are distributing dry food.

Question: Can you ensure our donation money is spent only on food relief or cash transfer? If not, can you provide a list of services our fund will be used for?
Response: Yes it will be used per donor intention.
 
Question: Are you able to customize your food relief or cash transfer efforts based on what we want the donation to be used for?
Response: We are. In fact, each month, we ask the families for input on our food packs and tweak to reflect their needs.
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism to ensure transparency of exactly where our money is going?
Response: Thrive has delivered food to schoolchildren since 2012. To ensure transparency, we require all of our partner schools to sign an annual contract that includes the requirement to send photos and videos. We have volunteers who conduct random monthly spot checks on our work. We have a paperwork flow that monitors food deliveries for quantity and quality. Most importantly, we develop close and trusting relationships with our school directors and teachers that encourage open communication and honest sharing.
 
Question: Can you give us an estimate of what percentage of our donation is used up in overhead cost i.e. if we donate 1000 USD, what fraction of that will go directly to the poor?
Response: More than 85%. We will also target for Nourish Bangladesh donation to be 100% food relief directed and have overhead costs come from other allocated sources.
 
Question: Is your organization secular or religiously-affiliated? Does this affect who you serve?
Response: Thrive is non-religious and non-political. Thrive is a US nonprofit 501c3 and Registered Bangladesh Trust.
 
Question: Can you give us a very brief history of your relevant past efforts that makes you uniquely suited to carry out relief efforts in the face of Covid-19?
Response: Thrive's mission is to feed hungry children living in the poorest areas of the world. Since 2012, Thrive has remained steadfast to our mission and fine-tuned our delivery model to ensure it is cost-effective, accurate, fully transparent. Typically, we partner with Direct Fresh to deliver nutritious meals every school day to over 3,000 students at 13 schools and two community programs. When the schools closed, we maintained our delivery system but pivoted to monthly dry food packs. That shift was nearly seamless due to our long-term work focused exclusively on food distribution.
 
Question: Do you have any mechanism in place to ensure that you are aware of which households are getting help from the government, so as to avoid overlapping coverage with government efforts?
Response: The schools we work with are not government supported. Thrive requires schools to apply for our services through a survey, several visits, and a short-term trial contract prior to committing to partnership. Through those steps we determine if there is duplication of services.
 
Question: Do you have any results from non-profit assessment organizations (i.e. Givewell)?
Response: We are a Global Giving awardee.

 

Updated: 09/29/2020