‘The book tells the tale of 14 female artisans who build resilience to climate change through their art’

With a view to celebrating female artisans who are susceptible to climate change but building resilience to climate change through their artistry, Brac launched a book on Thursday highlighting the stories of 14 craftswomen.

The book was unveiled by Saber Hossain Chowdhury MP, chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Environment, Forest and Climate Change, at a virtual event.

Saber Hossain Chowdhury said the book was not just about Brac or craftsmanship. More importantly, it was about the spirit of Bangladesh, especially its women.

Women are 14 times more vulnerable than men during disasters, he noted.

Follow-up stories of these women artisans would be interesting, he remarked, adding: “I would like to see where these women will be in the next five or 10 years.”

Liakat Ali, director of the climate change program at Brac, said: “The book tells the tale of 14 female artisans who build resilience to climate change through their art.”

Ainun Nishat, professor emeritus of Brac University’s Centre for Climate Change and Environmental Research, said: “Sir Fazle Hasan Abed (founder of Brac) once told me that women need to be prioritized when providing loans so that they can earn a livelihood. That is because when a woman is empowered, the whole family receives its benefits.”

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Tamara Abed, managing director of Brac Enterprises, said: “The book shows how these artisans make their families stable and support their communities through their craftsmanship in the face of climate vulnerability.”

Kate Sangster, first secretary and head of aid of DFAT, Australian High Commission in Bangladesh, said there were individuals, families and communities that were fighting climate change through craftsmanship.

“This book tells the stories of those individuals, particularly women, children and people with disabilities. It shows that dignified work can give them autonomy,” she added.

British High Commissioner in Dhaka Robert Chatterton Dickson said the book linked artisans of villages to commercial markets.

Brac Executive Director Asif Saleh remarked that there were lives at stake due to climate change and they needed to be protected.

“The book takes us to their stories. It tells us that to turn their lives around, all they need is an opportunity. I hope these stories of resilience will inspire the world,” he added.

“No one is safe unless everyone is safe.”

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