LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - September 30, 2016) - BRAC, an international development organization dedicated to ending poverty worldwide, was ranked the top International Charity of the Year for 2016 by the Charity Times Awards on Wednesday. The Awards, which are organized by Charity Times Magazine, a trade publication for the UK non-profit sector, recognize and honor outstanding professionals and organizations and also promote leadership in management best practices.
"We are humbled to have received such an honor, particularly in a field full of exemplary organizations," said Lewis Temple, CEO of BRAC UK, the organization's affiliate in the United Kingdom. "This award is a tribute to BRAC's founder, Sir Fazle Hasan Abed, and the thousands of BRAC staff, around the world, working together to end poverty."
For more than 40 years, since its founding in Bangladesh, BRAC has fought to end poverty with a holistic approach, implementing a diverse set of services, that range from microfinance to education and healthcare to gender justice, to give people the tools they need to lift themselves out of poverty.
"Today, BRAC is unique as it is one of the only international development organizations working at scale that originated in the global South," said Donella Rapier, President and CEO of BRAC USA, the US-based affiliate. "This unique perspective has helped BRAC develop proven approaches to ending extreme poverty, which are now being replicated worldwide."
The award highlighted the organization's history of designing and implementing solutions at scale, particularly BRAC's Ultra-Poor Graduation approach, which helps the poorest graduate out of poverty. Recognizing that people in extreme poverty were unable to access and benefit from traditional programs, in the early 2000s, BRAC developed a sequenced set of interventions, delivered in 24 months and adapted to meet local needs, to help people obtain sustainable livelihoods.
After years of testing, the Graduation approach was successfully scaled to reach 1.6 million women, with 98 percent staying on an upward economic trajectory years after the program ended. The success attracted research partners and, in 2012, CGAP and the Ford Foundation piloted the approach in eight countries outside Bangladesh to test its effectiveness internationally. Their six randomized control trials -- the gold standard of research -- subsequently found that this integrated package of services for the ultra-poor worked to generate sustainable increases in consumption, income, food security and several other measures of household well-being in various contexts.
"Since its founding, BRAC has devoted itself to impact, innovation and sustainability," said Temple. "BRAC takes a holistic approach to fighting poverty, treating it as a system of interrelated barriers that must be addressed at the same time. Our dynamic, research-driven programs are changing the way the world fights poverty."
BRAC, formerly Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee, was founded in Bangladesh in 1972, and today is a global leader in creating opportunities at scale as a means to end poverty. It is the world's largest non-governmental development organization, touching the lives of an estimated 138 million people in 11 countries using a wide array of tools to create opportunities for people most in need.
This was the 17th year for the awards, which were held at the Park Plaza, Westminster Bridge. The event also works to shine a celebratory light on the sector, raise standards and offer ongoing professional development to the thousands engaged in charitable work in the UK. BRAC was pleased to share the short list for International Charity with six outstanding organizations, including Hospices of Hope, Send a Cow, Shivia, United World Schools, Vision for a Nation Foundation and Y Care International.
About CHARITY TIMES MAGAZINE
Charity Times is the leading business and management magazine for UK non-profit professionals. It offers a wide range of in-depth, independently-written features and news analysis. Each year, the Charity Times Awards work to honor the outstanding professionals in the many and varied fields of charity management; recognize, celebrate, and promote best practice; support continuing professional development; contribute to raising the standards of charity management; promote and raise the profile of the charity sector; and provide recognition for those who are providing effective support to the sector.
ABOUT BRAC USA
Formed in 2006, BRAC USA is an independent, US-based nonprofit that works to advance and support BRAC's global mission to create opportunities to unleash human potential and end poverty.
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