grantees » Akther Ferdowsi

Akther  Ferdowsi, Bangladesh

This grantee is still in the process of their leadership development with the JWH initiative. This profile will be completed once the grantee has finalised their activities.

Shortly after finishing her studies in History at the National University of Bangladesh, Ferdowsi Akther went to work at the Bangladesh Resource Centre for Indigenous Knowledge (BARCIK). She was situated in a remote village in Satkhira district close to the Sundarbans; the largest mangrove forest in the world. BARCIK has been involved since 1997 in incorporating indigenous knowledge into development programs. Ferdowsi is responsible for coordinating BARCIK’s gender and development programs. She is particularly committed to female farmers in the Manikganj region, aiming to improve their natural resource rights. These experiences have been incorporated in studies and reports within BARCIK and other NGOs. This included a gender mainstreaming project together with Both Ends, to whom she eventually presented her final report in Amsterdam.  

Ferdowsi is looking forward to contributing more effectively to the gender and environmental movement in Bangladesh. She plans to “break the ice” among her female colleagues by sharing with them the necessary skills needed to compete with their male counterparts at work and within their family.  

To do so, Ferdowsi will use her JWH Initiative grant to visit various Indian organizations as the Indian women’s rights movement is much more advanced there compared to Bangladesh. These visits will include the “Tagore Society”, a group that focuses on improving the livelihoods of youth communities. There she will improve her facilitation skills and enrich her knowledge on the environmental movement. Ferdowsi will also visit various NGOs such as the Keystone Foundation to improve her knowledge on the gender movement. Lastly, Ferdowsi will take English courses at the British Council in order to improve her writing and speaking skills. Ferdowsi has much confidence in her success and has made plans for the future; she plans to transfer her newfound knowledge and skills to her colleagues through seminars, meetings and continuous dialogue

Nominated by

Sukanta Sen:  BARCIK Bangladesh.