In this post a I am going to tell you a little description, activities, history, functions of the Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development – BARD. The academy is located in Kotbari area under Comilla district. Dr. Akhter Hameed Khan, who is the founder of BARD, is well known in Asia and the world for his distinguished leadership of the Rural Development Academy and the Rural Development Experiments at Comilla, Bangladesh.
The Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development (BARD), Comilla is internationally renowned for its various innovative works in the field of rural development in Bangladesh. The Comilla Approach to Rural Development, which is, in fact, a package of mutually supportive development models produced lasting impacts on changing the lives and living environment of the rural poor. On 27th May 2009, BARD celebrated its Golden Jubilee. It has more than 50 years of experiences in the arenas of training, research and action research which could be shared by other countries and people engaged in rural development around the world.
Facilities at BARD:
In the past recent years, some facilities have been developed at the campus to meet the needs of the trainees, visitors and campus residents.
- There are five hostels including one female hostel, with a total capacity of 280 seats.
- For organizing workshops, training, seminars, conferences and symposiums there are five Air Conditioned classrooms, four A/C conference halls, one Computer center, one IT lab with 50 computers and a library with about more than 60,000 books.
- There is a bank, a post office, a telegraph office, a cooperative store, medical center and a sport complex including a tennis court.
- Adequate residential quarters have been built up for the faculty and staff at the campus.
- There is a VIP Guesthouse named Bano-Kutir, a cottage with a beautiful sylvan background.
- There are two verdant hilltops, which are named as Nilachal and Banasri. These are surrounded by a network of roads cum walkways by the side of the hills in the shade of trees of various kinds.
Some functions of BARD as described on their web portal:
- Conducting various researches in the rural development and allied fields.
- Conduct training for the Government officials and others about rural development.
- Test, experiment concepts and theories of rural development.
- Evaluate the programs and activities relating to the rural development.
- Provide advisory and consultative service to the government and other agencies.
- Guide and supervise national and foreign students in their dissertation works.
- Conduct national and international seminars, conferences and workshops.
- Help policy planners in the field of Rural Development.
Training facilities in BARD:
The Academy is a designated national training institute in Bangladesh including both officials and non-officials.
- Officials comprise civil servants, officers of nation building departments and international participants of development sector organizations etc.
- Non-officials are local councilors, local leaders, and members of co-operatives. Students of educational institutions, member of voluntary organizations etc.
Various Researches in BARD:
The academy has been conducting Socio-Economic research since its inception. Research findings are used as training materials and inputs for initiating action research by the Academy itself, and as information materials and policy inputs by the Ministries, Planning Commission and Policy Makers for undertaking development programs. In some particular cases, these are also disseminated among the international agencies and institutions.
BARD conducts experimental projects to evolve models of improved institutions, administrative structures, coordination and methods of production in the country. The project activities usually involve the villagers, development institutions, local councils and government officials. So far the Academy has conducted about 50 experimental projects on various aspects of rural development. Through these pilot experiment's it has been able to evolve the following rural development models that have already been replicated throughout country as components of the Comilla.
- Two-tier Cooperatives
- Thana (Presently Upazila) Training and Development Centre (TTDC)
- Rural Works Program (RWP) and
- Thana (Presently) Upazila) irrigation Program (TIP)
Besides, government has been replicating two recent models of BARD which are: Comprehensive Village Development Program (CVDP) and Ecological Sanitation while another recent model has been replicated as Small Farmers Development Foundation (SFDF).
That's all for today, to know more details about BARD please visit their web portal. Thanks.
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Comilla Victoria Govt College
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Comilla University - for Better Education