There are 34,000 such schools across Bangladesh, with 1.1 million students. They are run not by the government, but by a nongovernmental organization, the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee, or BRAC. Together, its schools represent one of the largest private education systems in the world.
The same organization is providing 3.5 million women with microcredit loans, more than any other organization in Bangladesh, including the better known Grameen Bank. BRAC also runs a commercial bank, a dairy, a hatchery, a poultry feed factory, a plant-tissue culture laboratory, seed processing centers, an Internet service provider, a chain of clothing and craft shops, a university and more. It provides health care at some 90 clinics and more than 2,000 prenatal clinics.
It does, in short, much of what a government should do, and what in many countries, the private sector would do. That is BRAC’s strength but, many say, Bangladesh’s weakness.
I think we should talk to them about our TeleInfoCentres idea.