BRAC

Rating: 4.87 stars   15 reviews

Issues: Education, Health, International, Economic Development

Location: 110 William Street 29th floor New York NY 10038 USA

Mission: Our vision is a world free from all forms of exploitation and discrimination where everyone has the opportunity to realize their potential. Our mission is to empower people and communities in situations of poverty, illiteracy, disease and social injustice. Our interventions aim to achieve large scale, positive changes through economic and social programs that enable women and men to realize their potential.
Results: BRAC has: * made more than $6 billion in microfinance loans to 7 million women and their families, * educated more than 6 million children, * created more than 10 million employment opportunities, * provided health education and services to 100 million people through women health promoters, and * provided safe spaces, training and microfinance to thousands of adolescent girls
Target demographics: BRAC targets people, mostly women and children, whose lives are dominated by multiple forms of deprivation.
Geographic areas served: Asia, Africa and the Carribbean
Programs: BRAC reaches more than 138 million people worldwide through its micro-loans, education and health services, human rights and legal services, and self-employment opportunities. BRAC's 125,000 staff members work in 11 countries across the world - Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Liberia, Pakistan, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Southern Sudan, Sri Lanka, and Uganda, with affiliate offices in the United Kingdom and the United States.

2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit
Write a Review
Invite people to share their experience with this nonprofit!

Promote This Nonprofit

GreatNonprofits badges allow you to raise awareness of your favorite nonprofits on your own web sites!

Review this charity on
GreatNonprofits

Community Reviews

Rating: 4 stars  

Dear susan
thanks very much for sharing this information with me.I would like to comment BRAC for this wonderful work done.I went to Bangladesh to understudy the brac TUP/SUP program in September 2010 and i got to know the good work brac has done to bring people out of ultra poverty.

The Innovation for poverty action and the Presbyterian Agricultural service-Northern Ghana is implementing this program called Graduating from ultra poverty (GUP). we are currently conducting baseline survey on the clients selected to participate in the program.
finally i will want to commend brac for this great achievements and hope that many countries including Ghana could benefit from this health program.
Thanks

Mahama Alhassan
PAS-Ghana
program Coordinator

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

sharing their experiences on the tup/stup and that has enhanced the implementation of the Ghana GUP Program

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

plead with BRAC to extend its partnership to my country Ghana.There are committed organizations who could support them to achieve greater results in poverty reduction by enhancing income and food security

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I worked as a summer intern in summer of 09' for MANOSHI- MNCH maternal and neonatal health project in urban slums of Dhaka.My ‘light-bulb’ moment in public health came inside a small hut in a crowded Bangladeshi slum as I watched a group of women-all undereducated slum dwellers- help a woman give birth to a healthy baby girl. All they used for what I once thought as a complicated surgical procedure was a sterile scalpel, piece of thread, some gauze, a plastic sheet and incessant religious chants. This moment brought into stark reality the positive impact this community-based approach have and will continue to have in reducing high maternal and neonatal mortality rates in Bangladesh. During my in-depth interviews, regional meetings and personal encounters with Bangladeshi health workers and slum inhabitants, I learned how community-based health can pave a path not only to upgrade living standards but also to safeguard human rights and gender equality. BRAC has done a highly commendable job in reaching and serving these underpriviledged women and thier families and creating a healthier generation amidst extraordinary levels of poverty. At MANOSHI what is saw was women's empowerment I have read in books and policy reports, put into action. I wish BRAC-Bangladesh and its staff more and more strength to carry out thier wonderful work in eliminating poverty, safeguarding human rights and empowering women and younger generations in Bangladesh!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

testimonials, interviews, meeting and randomly talking to people who benefit from the project. I have seen from my own eyes and heard from my own ears :)

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Would intitiate more communication links between project's beneficiaries and the administration. If funding is available, it will be beneficial to provide ambulances/transporation methods for patients at risk.

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

I became a volunteer through BRAC USA after four years of experience in Investment Banking and Private Equity investing. This experience in providing financial, strategic and management support to middle market and entrepreneurial businesses helped lay the ground work for my interest in the support and development of social enterprises, particularly in the developing world. BRAC represents a pioneer in the field and stands as the world’s’ most successful and diversified social enterprise development organization as demonstrated by the range of program support enterprises and commercial projects it has established over the last 30 years. Each enterprise is aimed at providing its beneficiaries with high quality inputs and market access at fair prices. Additionally, any profit that is generated through commercial ventures such as BRAC Dairy and Aarong retail stores is reinvested into the organization to support programs in education, health, social development and disaster relief. Over a three month period I volunteered to work in Bangladesh. As a volunteer I visited many of BRAC’s social enterprises and met with the talented and dedicated management teams to gain a better understanding of the operations, future initiatives and track record of social development. I feel very fortunate to have been provided this opportunity by BRAC as it was a unique experience to learn more about BRAC’s pioneering social business model. It is a model that demonstrates the efficiency, growth and scale of high performing social enterprises and helps define the true potential of corporate social impact. As BRAC’s Managing Director of Enterprises and former commercial banking executive, Mr. Rumee Ali told me on my first day, the commercial world has a lot to learn about the true meaning of “corporate responsibility,” an often used but vaguely defined and applied buzzword that I gained more appreciation and admiration for with each day at BRAC.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Bangladesh and Uganda, two of the major areas where the organization operates. Most importantly I spent time visiting with the beneficiaries of BRAC's education, microfinance, health and other development programs.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

increase the number of countries where the organization operates. As of today the organization operates a number of countries in Africa and South Asia, but the success of the organization should be applied to even more countries with citizens in need.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the opportunity to visit the programs and meet the beneficiaries in person. Specifically, I traveled to Bangladesh and Uganda.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

the most dedicated and selfless individuals I haver ever met. Everyone was also extremely hospitable and very helpful to ensure my experience was nothing short of amazing.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

It could invest in a program that would ultimately become self-sustainable and scalable to reach millions of people in need. That is what BRAC does best.

Ways to make it better...

I had more time to spend visiting the programs and volunteering my skills to support the organization.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

to manage its growth. It is an organization that was started to help Bangladesh recover from the war of independence and now aims to help fight poverty around the world.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-10-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

13 people found this review helpful

I am fortunate to have the opportunity to intern with BRAC USA in the summer of 2010. As an individual who is passionate about poverty alleviation, I feel inspired by BRAC’s mission and achievements. The multifaceted approach towards poverty alleviation has proven both scalable and sustainable across Africa and Asia. BRAC inspires because the organizations seeks to better the lives of the impoverished and underprivileged through the economic ad social empowerment of local communities. Furthermore, the flexibility with which BRAC approaches each of its projects is one of the organization’s greatest strengths. The creation of BRAC USA in 2007 is an integral step in raising awareness of the global issues faced today. I look forward to seeing the impact BRAC USA has on the international development landscape.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

hearing the testimonies of how profoundly BRAC affects its employees as well as the communities with which the organization is involved.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-6-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

14 people found this review helpful

I have been involved with BRAC since 2007, first as a volunteer and then as a member of their Advisory Council. BRAC is an amazing institution and one that I believe truly represents the future of development. They touch nearly all aspects of development. From healthcare to agriculture to microfinance to education to women's issues, BRAC does it all and they do it well. As I think about BRAC in the context of other organizations, I think, "what if the World Bank merged with Berkshire Hathaway", famed investor, Warren Buffet's, company. A Goliath utterly devoted to alleviating poverty, but managed like the best of the global multinationals. I have personally visited BRAC’s operations in Uganda, Bangladesh and Liberia. I have seen their mega dairy and chic fashion stores in Dhaka (providing market linkages for the poor in general and microfinance clients in particular), poultry vaccination and model farm programs in Liberia and adolescent development programs in Uganda, among others. Seeing a woman proudly display the hair dryer for her salon business in Uganda that a BRAC loan enabled her to buy, watching families gather on poultry vaccination day in Liberia, touring the gleaming dairy in Dhaka that effectively creates the market linkages for BRAC borrowers, seeing a women proudly showing her rice plot which demonstrated the in-line planting method for rice all gave me a clearer picture of the good work BRAC does. The scale and breadth of their programs is truly stunning. They start small, think big and scale up. They fix what doesn't work and stop what can't work. Though BRAC's main activity is microfinance, it would be a mistake to classify them as such. Their expertise in education is so deep, governments often invite them in to help build school systems. Their experience in health is such that they are considered as partners for the largest healthcare NGOs. Indeed they were early pioneers in such critical interventions as Directly Observed Treatment or DOT for TB treatment as well as oral rehydration therapy, so critical for combatting water born diseases in children. When I think about BRAC's secret sauce, I can't help but think that a key ingredient is the Bangladeshis. How many western NGOs would be able to field experts with 20 years of experience, in disciplines as diverse as education, healthcare and agriculture and convince them to move to such tough neighborhoods as Sudan, Afghanistan, Sierra Leone and Liberia for months and years at a clip. No family, no gleaming white SUVs, no security detail, no fancy hotels. Just the passion to help leave the world a little better than they found it.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have visited BRAC's operations in Bangladesh, Uganda and Liberia

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

14 people found this review helpful

BRAC is one of the very few 501(c)3 organizations that has a wise and clear mission backed by the enormous ability of the leadership team to execute its defined strategy in a flawless manner. The impact of BRAC is creating an awakening amongst the women with respect to the value they can add in making their communities more "just" and less disadvantageous in economic terms. If only it was possible to clone BRAC our world would be a much better place for humankind.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Resource generation is becoming a bigger challenge. I am most impressed with BRAC's success ratio in presenting convincing grant proposals and obtaining funding from diverse group of donors including some of the best-known and well-respected foundations

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the competence of its staff and the passion with which they do their work

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

absoultely superb

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

add $100 million worth of results to promote social justice and mitigate poverty

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

13 people found this review helpful

As other reviews have attested, BRAC is an immense organization and a key player in the global fight against poverty. The numbers and the narratives speak for themselves. I'll focus this review on the period from 2008-2010, when I had the privilege of working at BRAC USA. Much energy during that time was being directed towards creating broader awareness of BRAC's work. For too long BRAC was regarded as the "best kept secret in development". That notion limits efforts to mobilize the type of resources required for BRAC to extend its reach and unique expertise to more communities in need. The demand for BRAC is huge, with heads of state often asking founder F.H. Abed when the organization will start working in their country. But funding and partnerships are critical to meeting BRAC's own ambitions, much less the demand. The process of introducing BRAC to the potential donors, partners, and the uninitiated was an eye opener. There was something in the BRAC universe for everyone and I never came across anyone who wasn't in some way moved by the work. This was a great source of pride. I hope the reader of this review will take steps to learn more about this phenomenal organization. In a way I envy you for that prospect of discovering something so wonderful.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

- Visiting headquarters in Dhaka - Visiting BRAC VO meetings and other activities in Bangladesh and Pakistan - Working for two years with BRAC USA

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

- N/A

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the opportunity to share its work with others.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

wonderful, caring, supportive individuals who care deeply for the work.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

multiply the effect better than any other non-profit I know of.

Ways to make it better...

I had seen even more of the work live.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

keeping a pace with the demand for its work and the regrettably expanding need for its services.

One thing I'd also say is that...

you have found a sustainable solution for problems that, perhaps far away, effect and reflect deeply on all of us. Learn more about BRAC and see how you can contribute to its work!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Was this review helpful? 
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

12 people found this review helpful

One of the things I most admire about BRAC is its holistic approach to poverty development (microfinance, public health, education, and empowerment). I have had the opportunity to visit some BRAC projects in Bangladesh and see them in action and they are truly doing transformational work. Additionally, BRAC's innovative social enterprise model allows for a very successful mode to empower the needy while raising funds to sustain BRAC programs that support communities around the world. BRAC's ability to deploy their unique holistic development models around the world makes them an innovative leader in the social sector. Lastly, BRAC's capacity in terms of employing over 125,000 is absolutly impressive and speaks volume about its reach and success.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

BRAC's Brace and Limb Center, a health center, and schools in Bangaldesh.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

I had the opportunity to intern with BRAC USA in the summer of 2008 through the JP Morgan Chase Foundation. I had read about BRAC's work in undergraduate classes, but interning with the organization made me so passionate about getting even more people involved. BRAC's holistic strategy to poverty alleviation and innovative value chains make it a remarkable non-profit leader.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Reading testimonials and interacting with previous borrowers. BRAC has done an incredible job in furthering microfinance and female empowerment initiatives.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

I believe strongly in the BRAC model of holistic provision of services (financial, health, education) as well as their emphasis on social enterprise. I see social enterprise as offering the best opportunity to address the intractable problems affecting our people and our planet today. I believe the use of business principles (effective leveraging of resources, focus on consumer needs) combined with a social mission offers a sustainable and scaleable approach - the best of both worlds. An example I particularly like is the BRAC Village Organization project. Women who invest their loans in cows can take advantage of an 'ecosystem' of support around their business - high producing hybrid cows, education on care and maintenance of the animals, an organization to provide a market for the milk. This approach reduces risk for the new business and improves the opportunity for sustainable return.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I am a donor and supporter of BRAC USA.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

Was this review helpful?