Motivation of Founder

At fifteen years of age, after falling from a 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. Dulal’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, Dulal 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 & humanitarian 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 with using huge volume of resources. He also realized that issues of disabled people were focused on charity, segregation and medical that were actually not improving overall development of the disabled men or women. Moreover that increased dependency of them among others. He raised voice against the unethical practice at Government Vocational Centre in Tongi & succeeded, where he did has experience on disabled people situation through his 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 to international 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 in numerous seminars, conferences, symposiums, workshops, special events, public meetings and advocacies meetings at different levels including with Bangladesh Government, different committee of Bangladesh Government, DPI, EDF, UN, WHO, ILO, EU, JICA, ADB, WB, IA, WI, AusAid, USaid, different commissions including human rights commissions and universities, parliament and many civil society forums etc. 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. For his continuous effort, BPKS also was recognized by the many people, donors and agencies including United States Department of State in 2013.

BPKS Development

BPKS came into being in 1985 as an non-government, not for profit, non-political voluntary organization for all types of persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Bangladesh with the initiative of Mr. Abdus Sattar Dulal the current Executive Director (CEO) 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 and advocacy, sports, cultural and recreational activities and members development program from 1985, continue 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 a 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 gained 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 Counselor 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 with 45 country participation in Dhaka with financial assistance of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).Followed by DPI leadership training seminar BPKS also hosted a disabled people organization management training supported and facilitated by UNESCAP from December 4 to 16, 1993 for 16 country. This seminar and trainingis viewed as the turning point for disabled people in Bangladesh. For the first time, issues of disabled people were viewed by government people as human rights and development rather than charity/medical.

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 the process of experience, BPKS introduced a unique approach called PSID (Persons with Disabilities Self-Initiative to Development) in 1996. The PSID is a disabled people driven, rights-based, holistic approach that lifting disabled people as center of the development through empowerment of 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 organizations. It provides incentive and start up support that contribute disabled person to fulfill their initial basic needs and make them habituated by benefiting from it to stay with their development growth that ultimately contribute to overall development of all people. PSID also demonstrated exemplary service model at grassroots level that replicable and beneficial to 100% population in respective location. Since then PSID became the main development strategic model to deal with promotion of equality and equity for disabled women, men and children. PSID outcome and impact is actualizing development process, improving responsible parties understanding and role that promote acceptability and recognition to all increasingly. It also contributes in changing thoughts and policies on/about of all. Finally, it facilitates increasingly to change the perception of all people about the acceptable development and human rights.

BPKS has been implementing a number of development projects on PSID. As a result, 23 Disabled People’ Organizations (DPOs) have been developed and localized at district level that registered with the government 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. These DPOs managing with their 2000 grassroots organizations of 41,000 disabled members. BPKS established 19 PSID Resource Centers in those districts to support the activities of DPOs.

In 2002 BPKS moved to its own complex, in 60 decimal of land space, later on it built as an accessible 8 storied building that provide office, conference, seminar, training and accommodation facilities, getting support from different international donor agencies including Japan Embassy & 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 with more than 100,000 disabled people participation, 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 replication. BPKS incentives supports (for example capital supports) directly change lives at least 250,000 people with disabilities, by indirect supports (for example teachers received orientation) with or without disabilities received benefits minimum 500,000 persons including 32 thousand professionals including 1700 journalists, from 1985 BPKS program was at least 300 time covered by electronic media, conduct 500 advocacy meeting with all authorities of bangladesh including President, Prime Minister, Ministers, Parliament Members, Secretaries, different Commissions Chairman such as election commission etc. about 100 national seminar organized, provide training to 32 thousand professionals including journalists, 80% of total population somewhat aware on disability, disabled people rights and development, perception regarding disabled people rights and development among the leaders and policy makers of the country improve positively, civil society people, professionals gain knowledge and motivations, disabled people increasingly integrating into different actions and importantly disabled people by themselves came out from bounded to open area space by overcoming all their challenge. Due to organizational (BPKS/DPOs) existence of disabled people and its performance contribute of elimination of unacceptable and unethical concept, discrimination, inhuman work, barriers and lack of fundamental rights. It also grows attention among all people in terms of prioritizing the democratic values, governance system and political practice by observing BPKS work at intervention locations.

BPKS has proven track record that promoting human rights of disabled people and actualizing development process, it is a promoter of rights, inclusive development and DPOs and involved from its inception in different national and international activities. 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 Workability, International Federation of Hard of Hearing Young People (IFHHYP),Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Forum (CDPF), Asia Pacific Disabled People’s Organization United (AP-DPO United).

BPKS and its’ leaderships actions are instrumental/contributes to improve the perceptions, policies and programs including many of organizations/agencies in the world such as – Bread for the World (BftW), ActionAid, AusAid, USAID, International Republican Institute (IRI) and National Democratic Institute (NDI)-USA, Human Rights Institutes, Handicap International (HI), Christian Blind Mission (CBM), International Labor Organization (ILO), World Health Organization (WHO), World Bank, Asian Development Bank (ADB), UN bodies, Universities, Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), Workability International, Disabled People’s International (DPI), Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Caritas, World Vision, European Union (EU), Oxfam, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Business Companies, David Banes Access and Inclusion Services Ltd and many others.

BPKS made progress in the field with unlimited achievements. Only exemplary milestone mentioned below out of amount of its achievements in same types/actions.

Milestones of BPKS:

1985 *BPKS established
            *1st National Press Conference at National Press Club.

1986 *BPKS introduced program on job placement for disabled people employment and sports.

1988 *Registered with department of social welfare, government of Bangladesh.

1989 *Commencement of district level activity in Tangail, Manikganj and Chandpur district.
            *Published first Newsletter of BPKS entitled 'ProtibondhiBarta'.

1990 *Registered with the NGO Affairs Bureau to operate with foreign assistance under the ForeignDonations (Voluntary Activities) Regulation Ordinance 1978.
            *National Workshop on sports at planning academy, Nilkhet, Dhaka-1205, March 12.

1991 *Achieved 1st foreign donation received.
            *BPKS branch established at 10 districts of the country.

1992 *Achieved the membership of Disabled People’s International (DPI).
         *1st ever in Bangladesh on behalf of disabled people as representing organizations BPKS delegate meet with Bangladesh President Mr. Abdur Rahman Bishashand submit 5 point proposal for disabled people’s rights promotion, April 25.
          *1st Mentoring Consultation with prospective disabled leaders in Dhaka-1205 dated October 25.
          *3rd December IDD 1st time observed jointly with by Bangladesh government.
          *BPKS started computer skilled training for disabled people in country 1st time.
          *CBR experimental project 1st implement by BPKS in Narsingdi, Bangladesh.

1993 *Hosted the 11th Asia-Pacific Regional Leadership Training Seminar with about 40 country participants.
            *Hosted a DPOs management training with support from UNESCAP for 16 Country.
            *Drafted the “National Policy on Disability” and submitted to the government of Bangladesh.

1994 *2 Membership with “National Coordination Committee on Disability”.
            *International day of disabled people observed in December 3rd jointly by Government of Bangladesh and BPKS where Prime Minister of Bangladesh declared for legislation and policy for disabled peoples.

1995 *BPKS Constitution amended and created Chief Executive Officer Position.
            *National Policy on Disability, was approved by the government of Bangladesh.

1996 *Introduced the Disabled Persons Self-Initiative to Development (PSID) approach.
            *National Action Plan 1996 andapproved by Government of Bangladesh in September.
            *BPKS leadership handed over the draft act to the deputy leader of the parliament on Dec10.
            *1st National Leadership Training for 60 disabled persons in Bangladesh completed.
            *BPKS education allowance and reader support introduced for blind student of Dhaka University.

1997 *BPKS achieved 60 decimals of land from Government with nominal price for BPKS complex.
            *BPKS achieved 1st volunteer from AVI, Australia.
            *15 October 1st white cane safety day observed and seminar was organized.
            *1st time in Bangladesh workshop on promotion women with disability employment organized.

1998 *BPKS became member of several committees, formed by the Government of Bangladesh.

1999 *Developed the 'Policy on Implementation and Management of the PSID.

2000 *Published first issue of ‘One for All’, the quarterly newsletter on PSID.

2001 *Disabled welfare act. Passed by the Bangladesh Parliament.

2002 *Inaugurated ground floor of the multi-storied building of BPKS complex on 13th May.

2003 *Six (6) DPOs to Development (DPOD) graduated and registered with the government.
            *1st National Seminar on Engagement of WWDs into Development held with 150 participants.
            *5 (five)DPOs to Development (DPOD) graduated and registered with the government.

2004 *BPKS participation instrumental drafting the Bangladesh Government PRSP Plan.
            *1st time National Seminar to Engage Journalist on Disabled Peoples’ Rights.
            *3 (three)DPOs to Development (DPOD) graduated and registered with the government.

2005 *National Alliance of Disabled Peoples’ Organizations (NADPO) established.
            *National Seminar on Universal Design Development organized.
            *BPKS instrumental in organizing national fair highlighting disabled people activities.
            *Australian University Student learned BPKS good practice.
            *BPKS use as case study in “POVERTY AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT PAPERS No. 12/ June 2005” of Asian Development Bank (ADB).

2006 *The first largest National Congregation of Disabled People held with participation of over 100,000PWDs from across the county at PaltonMoydan, Dhaka.    

2007 *Women with Disabilities Development Foundation (WDDF) established.
            *BPKS leadership unanimously elected Global Secretary of ‘Disabled Peoples’ International (DPI).
      *BPKS instrumental Roundtable on Electoral Access for the disabled people’ with NDI, USA where most of the political parties representatives participated.
            *BPKS leadership advocate to ensure signature of UNCRPD by Bangladesh Government.

2008 *“One for All International Seminar” on PSID held in Dhaka with participation of 17 nations.
            *6 (Six)DPOs to Development (DPOD) graduated and registered with the government.
            *First time meet with most of led political parties including AL, BNP to promote political inclusiveness.

2009 *“PSID Worldwide Department” established to replicate PSID in other countries.
            *Got Copyright Certificate of “Person with Disabilities’ Self-initiative to Development.
            *BPKS instrumental in organizing training to Dhaka City Corporation staffs.
            *UNCRPD Seminar organized where most of the stakeholder’s representatives participated.
            *10 (Ten)DPOs to Development (DPOD) graduated and registered with the government.

2010 *25 years anniversary of BPKS marked.
      *2nd national congregation of disabled people held with participation of about 100,000 disabled people from across the country at historical poltanmoydan in Dhaka.
            *Best practice of PSID award given to 7 successful leaders and 4 organizations (DPODs and DPOs) at National Press club, Dhaka.
            *BPKS leadership delegate meets with Prime Minister of Bangladesh and he submit 13 point proposal to promote policy, opportunity and participation of disabled people.

2011 *3 DPO established at 3 Parbhato Districts with 1 PSID Resource Center at Khagrachari District.
            *SADF (South Asian Disability Forum) Regional Leadership Conference held at BPKS.
            *BPKS story added in “World Report on Disability 2011” published by WHO.
            *1st National Budget consultation meeting with Finance Minister in Bangladesh.

2012 *Achieved membership of Commonwealth Disabled Peoples’ Forum.
            *BPKS Founder Mr. Abdus Sattar Dulal is honored with UNESCAP Disability Rights Champion Award.
            *BPKS Instrumental to ensure Disability Inclusion in Programs for UNHCR program.
      *BPKS leadership delegates meet with Honorable Bangladesh President and submit 13 point demand to promote disabled people rights and opportunity in country.

2013 *BPKS received recognition from Department of State of United States.
            *1st Training for Potential Election Observers for the National Election provided by BPKS and JANIPOP and NDI of USA.
            *BPKS participation instrumental contribution in drafting of disabled people rights and protection law 2013, Bangladesh.
            *DPOs achieved their long-term strategic plan and organizational profile with support of BPKS.

2014 *Organized a first ever workshop with leading Employers’ agencies representatives for promotion of disabled people’s employment in Bangladesh. In august 1st time organized this type seminar with all chambers leaders including FBCCI president on “Employment Promotion” at Dhaka with partnership of York University and Canadian government.
            *1st National seminar on young women with disability leadership to development organized.

2015 *Hosted Extra Ordinary World Council Meeting of DPI (Disabled Peoples’ International).
            *1st time local government level consultation organized at different districts, upzila and unions.
            *National Seminar on “Rights of Disabled Woman and Child 2015” was organized with 250 percipients including 69 senior government officials.
        *2015 In the UN Website: 11:00 to 11:10: BPKS founder Abdus Sattar Dulal Video messages as leaders of DPOs --Part 2 was published at ceremony of 70th anniversary of UN and International Day of disabled people dated 3/12/2015.

2016 *BPKS initiatives open new window to ensure jobs for disabled people in garments sector in Bangladesh that ultimately creating revolutionary impact in contributing to country economy.
            *1st time in Bangladesh, 2 days Job Fair in Krishibid Institution of capital city organized from April 23 to 24, 2016 thousands of disabled people and 50 employer participated in the fair.
            *BPKS leadership instrumental to Mapping of Ministries by Targets in the implementation of SDGs aligning with 7th Five Year Plan (2016-2020).

2017 *BPKS started to appoint “BPKS Volunteer Ambassadors” which are honorable representatives and Independent of time, setup or location and having scope of volunteerism to support BPKS work.
            *BPKS JAPAN established.
            *BPKS achieved the membership of workability international in Hong Kong Meeting June 13

2018 *Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Begum Rokeya University, Rangpur and BPKS signed to cooperate each other’s for the purpose of promotion and developing students on disability and development with independent departmental support under Begum Rokeya University, Rangpur, dated February 5, 2018.
          *BPKS promote sport activities from beginning of its establishment as such Bangladesh and Indian disabled cricket team T-20 at Dhaka organized April 22 to 24, 2018 where from India Indian Cricket Federation for the Disabled and Bangladesh team led by a DPO (Ardrid Bangladesh).
          *BPKS started national lottery for local fund raising for its activities from June 20, 2018.
        *BPKS team provide consultation support to Australia Awards Program to ensure disabled people scholarshipfor which Australia Awards Program team Country Program Manager Louise Jennion and Program Officer Hafsa Rahman visited BPKS dated June 26, 2018.

2019 *Her Excellencies Charlotta Schlyter, Ambassador of Sweden and Sidsel Bleken of Norwegian Ambassador to Bangladesh, both of them visit BPKS on June 18, 2019 for learning about disability, situation and challenges of disabled people rights and development and role of disabled people organizations. BPKS team experts and successful participation educate them.