JRS representatives visit Rohingya camp in Cox’s Bazar


Cox’s Bazar Correspondent:

Two representatives of the Jesuit Refugee Services (JRS) visited camps for the Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals (FDMN) in Cox’s Bazar on Wednesday (21 September 2022).

The two visiting members- Rev. Fr. Franklin Peter Rex Joseph, SJ, and Ankita Gupta, Regional Program Officer, South Asia, JRS, were guided by Rev. Fr. Jerry, SJ, Bangladesh Project Director, JRS.

Md Mosharraf Hossain, Manager, Protection, ERP, CB; Shoshangko Ritchil, Area Coordinator, ERP, CB; Ananda Kumar Biswas, Child Protection Coordinator, ERP, CB; and among others were present during the visit.

JRS representatives visited Multipurpose Children and Adolescent Centers (MCAC-1 & 10) in Camp-4 & Camp-2oext. MCAC centers were established by Caritas Bangladesh with support from Caritas Luxembourg & JRS.

The eight MCAC centers run jointly by Caritas Bangladesh and JRS are as follows- MCAC- 1 (Hope); MCAC- 2 (Love); MCAC- 3 (Harmony); MCAC- 4 (Grace); MCAC- 5 (Joy); MCAC- 6 (Peace), MCAC-10 (Courage), MCAC-11 (Light).

The JRS representatives interacted with the children being served at MCAC. They also talked with community members such as block leaders, Community Based Child Protection Committee members, Center Management committee members, religious leaders & Community Volunteers.

A block leader of Rohingya community, said “JRS-Caritas provided psychosocial to a 10-year-old girl who was trafficked and found back in Block-B, which brought the victim & her family out of fear. The MCAC center has become very popular in my block & children feel safe and learn something through participating in different group activities.”

During the visit, Rev. Fr. Franklin Peter Rex Joseph, SJ, said “We, JRS, are committed to creating a safe space for the children, to ensure their development without fair & mental-distressed. We plan to open the MCAC next month and aid the children’s development & protection process. We are grateful to community people, and it is great opportunity for me to interact with children and community people and realize their feelings and commitment to JRS-Caritas Intervention.”

He also said that JRS-Caritas has been providing psychological support with fair treatment to the children of Rohingya community as they can come out of distress.

Ankita Gupta, Regional Program Officer, South Asia, JRS shared, “now I feel how committee people are relying on CB-JRS intervention to protect and develop children. I’m thankful to all committee members who joined today’s community interaction and shared their feelings.”

She also said that, “we’re planning to design a project for skill development of adolescent girls and ask community people for their support to implement it in the future. After affirmation from the community leaders, we, JRS, could raise funds for that intervention very shortly.”

Rev. Fr. Jerry, SJ, Bangladesh Project Director, JRS, acknowledged the community people’s concerns and committed to the community people immediately to open the session & Center very quickly. 

Md Mosharraf Hossain, Manager, Protection, ERP, CB, said Caritas Bangladesh is committed to providing quality support to the service holders to enhance their adaptability, capacity, and awareness regarding child protection, child caring, GBV, domestic violence, and so on.

Ananda Kumar Biswas, CP coordinator, explained the children’s activities & EoL (Essence of Learning) session and how they impacted their cognitive, social, and emotional development through Caritas-JRS support. Low cost & no cost materials are made by the Bangladeshi facilitators, Rohingya Caregivers, & volunteers for ensuring children’s participation.

After finishing MCAC- 1 & 10 visit, JSR visitor team went to Camp-4ext and saw the Idea Box presentation at Caritas Bangladesh & Caritas Germany Intervention “Education for adolescents and youth” project. They also visited Caritas Bangladesh’s flagship intervention Shelter & site improvement.