The Church of Bangladesh has stepped forward in love and in action to assist those in need after the recent collapse of a garment factory in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Providing food, water and other essential materials they aided the rescue of trapped workers andhave also been able to provide financially for the poor families affected by the disaster.
More than 700 poeple died and many more were seriously injured when the factory building collapsed: the garment workers, who make clothing that sells in some of the richest countries in the world, live in poverty and are unable to access medical treatment so that they can recover and return to work to support thier families.
Bishop Paul S Sarker, Moderator of the Church of Bangladesh, recently visited the injured in hospitals in Dhaka, and was struck by the urgent need for the treatment of these workers; the Bishop urges all Anglicans to come to the aid of their brothers and sisters in Bangladesh and give generously to the appeal, which will be open on the Anglican Alliance website shortly. You can also see pictures of his visit to the garment workers in hospital on the Alliance website.
The Church are widely engaged in supporting their community and particularly assist those who are marginalised or forgotten by other aid donors. They hope to be able to provide treatment to the poorer workers, and women who are often excluded from financial support.
Wider attention has also been brought to the working conditions in the garment factory, and throughout the clothing industry in Bangladesh. Pope Francis released a statement condemning the working conditions and calling them “slave labour”. Most Revd Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, has also publicly mourned the death of the workers with great sorrow and continually offers his prayers for the families affected.
Greatest impact will be felt by the families of the workers if they do not receive the urgent treatment that so many of them need. Unable to return to work, poverty and hunger will increase and there will be a great decline quality of life for many women and young children.
The Social Development Programme of the Church of Bangladesh is hoping to remedy this, and calls on the wider global community to support their work and enable them to provide generously and effectively for the affected citizens of Bangladesh.