Share-Net Bangladesh 8th SRHR Knowledge Fair 2023: Shaping a Smarter Bangladesh through Education
On September 7, 2023, the 8th SRHR Knowledge Fair, presented by Share-Net Bangladesh, brought together a dynamic mix of government officials, experts, and advocates at the Bangabandhu International Conference Center to shed light on the crucial intersection of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and education in Bangladesh. The theme, “SRHR & Education – For Smart Bangladesh,” aimed to emphasise the significance of comprehensive SRHR education in shaping a healthier and more empowered future for the nation.
The event was jointly presented with Aspire to Innovate (a2i) as the Strategic Partner, and the Directorate of Secondary & Higher Education extended invaluable support throughout. Organised by RedOrange Communications, the host organisation of Share-Net in Bangladesh, this year’s Knowledge Fair proved to be an enlightening platform for dialogue and learning.
Diverse voices at the conference underscored the importance of providing young people with accurate and age-appropriate information about their sexual and reproductive health. Kamal Hossain, Senior Secretary, Technical and Madrasah Education Division, Ministry of Education, emphasised the government’s commitment to this cause, stating, “We are committed to ensuring that every young person in Bangladesh has access to accurate and age-appropriate information about their sexual and reproductive health, empowering them to make informed decisions for a healthier future.”
Kristine Blokhus, Country Representative, UNFPA, recognised the potential of integrating SRHR education into the broader educational framework, enabling the younger generation to lead healthier and fulfilling lives. “By integrating SRHR education into the broader educational framework, we can equip the younger generation with the knowledge and skills they need to lead healthy, fulfilling lives,” she noted.
Mr. Thijs Woudstra, Deputy Head of Mission, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, praised initiatives prioritising the well-being of young people through comprehensive SRHR education. He stated, “It’s a step toward building a brighter future for Bangladesh.” These encouraging words reinforce the international support for the cause.
Professor Dr. Sayeda Shahina Subhan, Director, Centre for Medical Education (CME), Directorate General of Medical Education, highlighted the importance of quality SRHR education for healthcare professionals. She underlined how such education equips them with the knowledge and sensitivity required to provide effective reproductive healthcare.
The Knowledge Fair featured a wide array of sessions, discussions, and presentations that revolved around integrating SRHR into formal and informal education systems. Experts and stakeholders shared innovative approaches, research findings, and success stories in the fields of SRHR and education. Government officials, academicians, healthcare professionals, members of civil society, and international delegates all converged at this informative event.
The fair concluded by recognising the exceptional contributions of individuals in the field of SRHR. The Share-Net SRHR Recognition Award 2023 was presented in three categories: the ‘Youth Leadership Award’ celebrated Robin Mia, a youth leader working for DGFP-Mymensingh division. The ‘Community Champion Award’ was conferred upon Amzad Hossain Chowdhury, a teacher and menstrual health advocate. Finally, the ‘Lifetime Achievement Recognition’ recognised Dr. Ubaidur Rob, Country Director of Population Council Bangladesh, for his monumental contributions in the field of SRHR.
This remarkable event also saw the presence of other distinguished guests, including NCTB’s Chairman, Mohammad Farhadul Islam; Md. Belayet Hossain Talukder, Additional Secretary, Secondary and Higher Education Division, Ministry of Education; Asaduzzaman Noor, MP, former Minister of Culture; Ms. Doreen Thomisen, Coordinator of ShareNet International, and many more.
The 8th SRHR Knowledge Fair 2023 was a resounding success, fostering valuable discussions and collaborations to promote comprehensive SRHR education in Bangladesh. It is a testament to the commitment of government officials, experts, and advocates to ensure a healthier and more empowered future for the nation.
The 8th SRHR Knowledge Fair achieved remarkable success, thanks to the significant contributions of Aspire to Innovate (a2i) and the Directorate of Secondary & Higher Education (DSHE). As the Strategic Partner, a2i played a pivotal role in facilitating the event’s organisation, ensuring its seamless execution. Their dedication to promoting innovation and education integration in SRHR was instrumental in shaping the fair’s agenda. DSHE’s invaluable support and guidance throughout the conference were essential in harnessing the expertise and resources required to address the critical intersection of SRHR and education in Bangladesh. Share-Net Bangladesh takes pride in having a2i and DSHE as esteemed event partners, whose unwavering commitment greatly enhanced the impact and reach of the 8th SRHR Knowledge Fair, thereby advancing the cause of sexual and reproductive health and rights education in the country.
To get a comprehensive overview of the event, we invite you to read the Event Report, which provides in-depth insights into the Knowledge Fair’s discussions, achievements, and future prospects. You can also take a look at the Stalls, Posters, SRHR Awards, Young Researcher Fellowship Grants, Resource Materials, and Photographs of the 8th Knowledge Fair through our Event Page.