Livelihoods in Depressed Basins of Bangladesh: A Case Study of Derai and Baniachang, Sylhet

In recent decades, Bangladesh’s rural economy has made significant progress through technological progress in agriculture, development of infrastructure, and advancement of the rural non-farm economy. However, recognizing the vulnerability of the people living in the depressed basins of Sylhet (henceforth called by the local name “Haor”), BRAC decided to implement a pilot project in 2011 called “Integrated Development Programme (IDP)” to target the same villages and households with all its development interventions. The objective of this report was to examine the socioeconomic conditions and livelihoods of the Haor dwellers in these two Upazilas and collected information through a census of all households in all the villages belonging to the Upazilas conducted in two phases. Some findings from the report include- the poor state of provision of government and NGO services, the dire state of housing and sanitation services, unequal distribution of land with a high degree of landlessness, high incidence of tenant farming, selling labour for other’s farms as the main source of livelihood, a limited opportunity of fishing, and that almost three in four households suffering from food insecurity and poverty. However, it also found substantial engagement of women in home gardening and animal farming. The report concluded that the Integrated Development Programme with dense coverage of households and the provision of multi-faceted services through a single window is thus an extremely justified development intervention for the region.

Authors: Ara, Jinnat; Rahman, Rehnuma; Ahmed, Md Shakil; Ahmad, Sibbir; Hossain, Mahabub
Type: Report
Year: 2015