Motivation of Founder
At fifteen years of age, after falling from a betel nut tree, Md. Abdus Sattar Dulal entered a world he had not previously known. The severe injury he sustained was to be the impetus for what was to become a national movement in Bangladesh- a movement of more than three decades. Sattar’s injury took place in 1975 and his recovery was long and difficult, including some 42 days in a coma. While still undergoing treatment in 1980, he had an opportunity to develop his earliest organizational and management skills. Seeing a need for youth activities, he was part of the development of a local youth organization and was very active in organizing and participating in youth activities.
Early on, Sattar being a disabled person, began searching the various opportunities for service for himself and other disabled people. He found services for disabled people at that time were unsatisfactory. Most of the services benefits for disabled people were enjoyed by non-disabled people. These services were executed with charity focus, which means that it didn’t respect disabled people’s choices and their real rights. A few programs that existed were primarily center-based and served very small number disabled people. He also realized that issues of disabled people was focused on charity and medical that were actually not improving overall development of the recipient disabled men or women. Moreover that increased dependency among them. He raised voice very strongly against the Government Vocational Centre in Tungi, where he did training and worked for several years. This was a realization of him about the outside world for disabled people and their status in family, society or workplaces. Together with some likeminded disabled people he formed today’s BPKS (Bangladesh Protibandhi Kallyan Somity) to make their voice heard at national level, so that they would not be left out or subject of some kind of charity. Gradually he became nationally and internationally well known activist of disabled people’s human rights and instrumentally participated numerous seminar, conference, symposiums, workshop and public meeting at different levels including Bangladesh Government Committees, DPI, UN, Ausaid and civil society forum. In 2012 Mr. Sattar, the tireless visionary Leader with disability was awarded UNESCAP ‘Disability Rights Champion’ for his outstanding and substantial contribution to the promotion of disabled people’s rights. The award has been considered as recognition of BPKS family for the program and service it provides. For his continuous effort, BPKS also was recognized by the United States Department of State in 2014.
Bangladesh Protibandhi Kallyan Somity (BPKS) came into being in 1985 as an initiative of Mr. Abdus Sattar Dulal the current Executive Director of the organization. Initially this assisted a disabled people’s movement demanding their dignity, access to government or private sectors’ opportunities including employment promotion through job placement program, active participation in all levels and human rights of disabled people. As the movement grew on with national level advocacy, lobbying; grassroots level services for disabled persons including women and children and promotion of disabled people’s equal rights, BPKS emerged as an promoter and activists’ of human rights focus organization contributing not only in Bangladesh but also globally. By the time BPKS get national registration from Bangladesh Government in 1988 and gain government permission to work in nationwide, Foreign Donation registration in 1990 and in 1991 became the DPI (Disabled People’s International) member with gradually holding a World Counsellor and Global Secretary position by its leadership.
BPKS, Disabled Peoples International (DPI) and the Ministry of Social Welfare, Government of the Peoples’ Republic of Bangladesh jointly organized the 11th Asia-Pacific Regional Leadership Training Seminar on 29th November to 3rd December 1993 in Dhaka with financial assistance of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).This seminar is viewed as the turning point for disabled people in Bangladesh. For the first time, issues of disabled people were viewed as human rights and development rather than charity.
Within 1st decade of existence, BPKS implemented a number of projects on disabled people’s rights, national level advocacy, different training for disabled people rights issues and understanding and hosted international seminars in cooperation with national and international bodies including Bangladesh Government, UN, JICA and Disabled Peoples' International (DPI). Through this process, BPKS introduced an unique approach called PSID (Persons with Disabilities Self-Initiative to Development) in 1996. The PSID is a consumer-driven, rights-based, holistic approach that empowers persons with all types of disabilities to take responsibility for the initiation, participation and ownership of the development process. This PSID is solely viewed as disabled people’s self-initiative with necessary empowerments like improvement of self-esteem, intellectual capacity building, skills development, leadership development, knowledge management and capacity building of grassroots disabled people’s self-help organizations. Since then PSID became the main development strategic model to deal with promotion of equality and equity for disabled women, man and children.
BPKS has been implementing a number of development projects on PSID. As a result, 23 Disabled People’ Organizations (DPOs) have been developed and localized across Bangladesh which are now a days increasingly acting in Bangladesh as a safeguard of principles and rights of disabled people with which they feel comfortable and peaceful to ensure their equal rights, opportunities and mainstreaming the PWDs into the development process, so that they can play a responsible role and contribute in nation building activities as equal citizens.
In 2002 BPKS moved to its own complex, in 60 decimal of land space, later on it built as an accessible7 storied building that provide office, conference, seminar, training and accommodation facilities, getting support from different international donor agencies including BftW – a BPKS longstanding supporter since 1991, Japan Embassy and EU. BPKS capacities in terms of office base and PSID program implementation have been raised further up. Consequently, BPKS facilitated DPOs all over Bangladesh to form a DPOs networking body, NADPO (National Alliance of Disabled People’s Organizations) in 2005, to organize 1st ever largest congregations of disabled people in 2006 and 2010, to establish ‘Women with Disabilities Development Foundation’ (WDDF) in 2007 and to host International seminar ‘One for all’ to promote disabled people’s movement through PSID program.
BPKS is a promoter of DPOs and involved from its inception in different national and international bodies.BPKS has facilitated to establish National Alliance of Disabled People’s Organization - NADPO, a network of DPOs in Bangladesh and is member of it.BPKS is also holds membership with the Disabled People’s International - DPI,International Abilympic Federation (IAF), International Federation of Hard of Hearing Young People (IFHHYP), Commonwealth Disabled Peoples Forum (CDPF), Asia Pacific Disabled People’s Organization United (AP-DPO United) and holds associate membership with .Asia Pacific Development Center on Disability (APCD).
Milestones of BPKS:
1985 BPKS established.
1988 Registered with department of social welfare, government of Bangladesh.
1989 Commencement of district level activity in Chandpur district.
Published first Newsletter of BPKS entitled 'Protibondhi Barta'.
1990 Registered with the NGO Affairs Bureau to operate with foreign assistance under the Foreign Donations (Voluntary Activities) Regulation Ordinance 1978.
1991 Achieved the membership of Disabled People’s International (DPI).
1993 Hosted the 11th Asia-Pacific Regional Leadership Training Seminar to share views and exchange ideas on disability situation, disabled people rights and development issues in participation of representative from 25 countries.
Drafted the “National Policy on Disability” and submitted to the government of Bangladesh. As a result, the “National Policy on Disability 1995” was approved by the government of Bangladesh in 1995.
1994 BPKS elected As the DPI's Vice Chairperson for Asia-Pacific region and Chairperson for South Asia Region for 4 years.
2 Membership with “National Coordination Committee on Disability”.
1995 Organization’s Constitution amended, which created the position of Executive Director for ensuring effective management and sustainability of BPKS.
1996 Innovated the Disabled people’ Self-Initiative to Development (PSID) approach;
Membership of the “National Coordination Committee” and instrumental contribution in drafting of a National Action Plan for implementation of the National Policy on Disability-1995 which was approved by the Government of Bangladesh in September 1996.
Prepared the initial draft of the “National Disability Act” which was renamed and passed by the Bangladesh Parliament as “National Disability Welfare Act” in 2001
1997 Bangladesh Government donated 60 decimals of land for BPKS complex.
1998 BPKS became member of several committees, formed by the Government of Bangladesh:
- National Action Plan Implementation Steering Committee
- Health Service Affairs Sub-Committee
- District Coordination Sub-Committee
- Information Affairs Sub-Committee
- International Support Affairs Sub-Committee
- Employment Affairs Sub-Committee
- Accessible Barrier-Free Sub-Committee
- National Awards Affairs Sub-Committee
1999 Developed the 'Policy on Implementation and Management of the PSID Approach after successfully experimentation of PSID, BPKS initiated formal implementation of PSID program in Chandpur & Kurigram districts.
2000 Published first issue of ‘One for All’, the quarterly newsletter on PSID.
2002 Inaugurated ground floor of the multi-storied building of BPKS complex on 13th May by the Social Welfare Minister of the Government of Bangladesh.
2003 As an outcome of PSID Approach, Six (6) Disabled Peoples’ Organisation to Development (DPOD) graduated and registered with the government.
2005 National Alliance of Disabled Peoples’ Organizations (NADPO), a national networking organization of Disabled Peoples' Organizations (DPOs) established.
2006 National Congregation of Disabled People held with participation of over 100,000 PWDs from across the county at Palton Moydan, Dhaka.
2007 Women with Disabilities Development Foundation (WDDF) established
Mr. Abdus Sattar Dulal, Executive Director of BPKS was unanimously elected without contest as the Secretary of ‘Disabled Peoples’ International (DPI)’ World Council.
2008 “One for All International Seminar” held in Dhaka to share the PSID approach with 17 nations of the world.
2009 “PSID Worldwide” department was established to replicate the PSID approach to other countries.
Got Copyright Certificate of “ Person With Disabilities’ Self-initiative to Development Conceptual Frame “ from Copyright office of Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.
2003 to 2009 18 Disabled People’s Organization to Development (DPOD) have been localized.
2010 25 years anniversary of establishment of BPKS.
2nd national congregation of disabled people organized with participation of about 100,000 grassroots disabled people from across the country in historical poltan moydan.
2011 2 DPOD in Gazipur and Khagrachari localized including PSID Resource Center.
SADF (South Asian Disability Forum)Workshop and Regional Leadership Conference organized in Dhaka by BPKSwith cooperation of Bangladesh Government, UNESCAP, APCD, British Council.
2012 Become member of Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Forum
Founder & Executive Director of BPKS Mr. Abdus Sattar Dulal is honored with Asia Pacific Disability Rights Champion Award by UNESCAP.
2013 MIUSA Empower Partnership Exchange Program
MIUSA (Mobility International USA) awarded BPKS a partner in ‘MIUSA Empower Partnership Exchange Program’ and later on a small project entitled ‘Inclusive education of children with intellectual disabilities’. The program and project both were funded by the USA State Department.
2014 Organized a first ever workshop with leading Employers’ agencies representatives for promotion of disabled people’s employment in Bangladesh.
2015 Hosted Extra Ordinary World Council Meeting of DPI (Disabled Peoples’ International)