Bangladesh and Luxembourg's shared mission
A friendship association between Luxembourg and Bangladesh has called on the Bangladesh government to do more to help its poor.
At a meeting to welcome NGO Friendship Bangladesh founder Runa Khan to Luxembourg, lawyer Marc Elvinger criticised the Bangladesh government for not caring about its people.
He said: “Is it just for an NGO to do the work of an ineffective government that does not care about the welfare of its people?”
The Luxembourg Bangladesh Friendship group has changed the lives of millions of people since it was founded in 1998. Since 2001, more than a million patients have been treated on two hospital ships established by the non-governmental organisation. A third ship, the former Greenpeace Rainbow Warrior II, which was gifted to the charity, will be put in operation in 2012 under the new name Rongdhonu.
As well as its health support, the charity runs 70 primary schools and 35 adult literacy centres across Bangladesh.
The meeting was held at law firm Elvinger, Hoss and Prussen. Marc Elvinger joined the friendship group in 2007 after being impressed by efforts made by the group in the areas of health and education.
During her speech Runa Khan stressed the lack of support from public authorities to help in Brahmaputra, in the north and the coastal towns of the south, which were severely hit by Cyclone Sidr in 2007 and where the literacy rate is around 35%. “We decided to be the voice of reality and meet the immediate needs directly through the provision of services," she said.