UNDP and UNESCO collaborate on pilot adult literacy programs in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT)

Jun 3, 2013

Dhaka, 03 June 2012: Under the Chittagong Hill Tracts Development Facility (CHTDF), UNDP and UNESCO have initiated a collaboration to pilot an adult literacy program in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT). The pilot program is being implemented through three Hill Districts Councils (HDC).

The overall objective of the pilot initiative is to test an adult literacy model specifically adopted for CHT to facilitate human development for the overall improvement of lives and livelihoods in CHT. The initiative will also support the government’s work to increase the rate of literacy.

UNDP’s Chittagong Hill Tracts Development Facility (CHTDF) has been assisting the government in transferring decentralised power from the national level to the Hill District Councils (HDC), specialised institutions of local governance in charge of implementing the peace accord and providing public services.

UNESCO is engaged in providing technical support in the implementation of the pilot adult literacy program in three hill districts of Chittagong linking UNESCO’s current initiatives on systematizing non formal education (NFE) in the country through capacity building for the education for all (CapEFA) project.

The pilot initiative has been started with 900 adults in 30 centers from three hill districts (10 in each district) to provide education and life skill to the learners. The program has two phases, a six month basic literacy course followed by a post literacy and continuing education course. The later however, will focus on livelihood skills.
As an implementing partner the Bureau of Non Formal Education (BNFE) of the Government of Bangladesh (GOB) is contributing in facilitating program activities on the ground. One important feature of the pilot however, is the customization of BNFE materials to fit the culture, tradition and lifestyle of the region keeping while keeping its content and the learning objectives intact.

Community involvement is the main thrust of this initiative and a Centre Management Committee (CMC) for each centre has been formed made up of, UP members and community members and working closely with the learning centre.

Findings of pilot adult literacy and life skills program will determine the scaling-up of the pilot. The continued UN and GOB collaboration in promoting literacy in the CHT however, could pave the way for future interventions in this regard.

Contact Information

For further information please contact: Nasheeba Selim, Cluster Leader, Knowledge Management, CHTDF, UNDP via email: nasheeba.selim@undp.org, ph: +(880-2) 8150088 and Shereen Akther, Programme officer, Education, UNESCO via email: sh.akther@unesco.org, ph: +(88 0-2) 9862073