CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE FOR GENDER, SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND RIGHTS (CGSRHR)

Established in 2008, The Centre aims to promote a broader understanding of gender, sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) in Bangladesh and in the region through research, policy, advocacy and training activities. Using both academic and action-based research, the Centre generates knowledge and translates it into advocacy-based action for social change. Research topics under the Centre include HIV/AIDS, reproductive health service, gender-based violence, child marriage, digital tools for SRHR, bodily rights and behaviour change communication.

To promote SRHR, the Centre organises and conducts short trainings and courses that aim to stimulate critical thinking and reflections among practitioners. The Centre also facilitates advocacy efforts with various partners and networks to bring about greater awareness on relevant areas of SRHR work. Recent advocacy efforts have addressed SRHR and law, masculinity and men’s sexual health, and rights-based issues of minorities and disadvantaged communities.

Center Director Image

The Centre is led by

Dr Sabina F. Rashid

Director (CGSRHR)

View CV

For any inquiries:

Farhana Alam

Assistant Director

farhana.alam@bracu.ac.bd
Bachera Aktar

Assistant Director

bachera.aktar@bracu.ac.bd

Project Highlights

NATIONWIDE STUDY OF SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND RIGHTS (SRHR) OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES (PWDS) IN BANGLADESH Up icon image

Objective: This mixed method study conducted primary research among PWDs to better understand their SRHR needs, knowledge, sufferings, perception around sex and sexuality, and barriers in accessing SRHR services. The study reviewed existing interventions and/or services relevant to SRHR of PWDs and generate new knowledge by reviewing laws and policies relevant to disability and SRHR. Timeline: December 2018 - May 2020. Donor: Embassy of the Royal Kingdom of Netherlands. Partner: Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh.

IMPACT EVALUATION DESIGN FOR EVALUATION OF ADOLESCENT STUDENT PROGRAMME (ASP) IN BANGLADESH Down icon image

PI: Professor Sabina Faiz Rashid, Dean and Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Co-PI: Maheen Sultan, Head, Gender and Social Transformaton Cluster, BRAC Insttute for Governance and Development (BIGD), BRAC University.
Coordinator: Farhana Alam, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.


Objective: This qualitative study conducted evaluation of the impact of various components of the ASP intervention at the school level, with the overall aim to improve adolescent well-being, equipping the government of Bangladesh with an evidence-based and cost-effective model before scaling-up the ASP intervention and understanding of the knowledge, perceptions, practices, challenges and coping mechanisms of adolescent boys and girls living in low-income settlements during the pandemic. Timeline: March 2020 - December 2020 Donor: Gender and Adolescence: Global Evidence Programme, Overseas Development Institute (GAGE ODI). Partner: BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), BRAC University and Gender and Adolescence: Global Evidence

PROMOTING RIGHTS THROUGH INCLUSION AND EMPOWERMENT (PRITIE) Down icon image

PI: Professor Sabina Faiz Rashid, Dean and Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Coordinator: Ashfique Rizwan, Deputy Coordinator, BRAC JPGSPH; Md. Mostafizur Rahman, Assistant Coordinator, BRAC JPGSPH; Tasfiyah Jalil, Senior Coordinator, BRAC JPGSPH.


Objective: A study to address discriminatory laws, policies and practices related to marriage and sexual violence in the context of Bangladesh and international human rights standards. To create platforms for university students and young professionals in the project area to express their views and experiences on their freedom to express, choose, and consent to matters related to their own lives, and strengthen their knowledge and understanding and increase their participation in ensuring their rights and to enhance the capacity of service providers on SRHR. Timeline: January 2019 - September 2020 Donor: Swedish Association for Sexuality Education (RFSU). Partner: Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST).

Bridging Communities in Cox’s Bazar: Mitigating Risks and Promoting Gender,Governance, and Localization of Humanitarian Responses in COVID-19 Era Down icon image

PI: Professor Sabina Faiz Rashid, Dean and Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.br
Co-PI: Bachera Aktar, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH; Manzoor Hasan OBE, Executve Director, Centre for Peace and Justce.
Coordinator: Habiba Nowrose


BRAC JPGSPH has submitted the phase-1 research report to the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) in their online portal in August 2021. This report has been approved by the IDRC and will be published on their website soon. Additionally, one case study proposal titled “Engaging with Communities: The Case of Rohingya Refugee Crisis” submitted by Ateeb Ahmed Parry (Assistant Research Coordinator, BRAC JPGSPH), Rafia Sultana (Senior Research Associate, BRAC JPGSPH), and Kazi Sameen Nasar (Senior Research Associate, BRAC JPGSPH), has been selected by the Global Forum for Humanitarian Health Research (GFH2R) in August 2021. This will be one of the 15 case studies to be presented in that forum to be held in November this year (remotely). Two researchers have been selected for the Global Forum on Humanitarian Health Research (GFH2R); Ateeb Ahmed Parry (Assistant Research Coordinator, BRAC JPGSPH) as lead presenter and Rafia Sultana (Senior Research Associate, BRAC JPGSPH) as general attendee. Therefore, both of them will be participating in all the virtual meetings from this forum which will take place over two weeks, with sessions covering a cross-cutting theme of importance to conducting health research in the context of concurrent humanitarian crises. Apart from that, based on the research findings from the baseline survey, one paper titled “Impact of COVID-19 on household-level income and food security of Forcibly Displaced Myanmar Nationals and the adjacent host community in Bangladesh'', has been presented by the lead author Saifa Raz, Research Fellow, BRAC JPGSPH at the UNU WIDER development conference, held on 6-8 September 2021.


Moreover, a newspaper article titled Effective Campaign for Effective Vaccination in Rohingya Camps “, written by Rashadul Hasan (Project Manager, Centre for Peace and Justice, BRAC University), and Shakawat Hossain (Field Coordinator, Centre for Peace and Justice, BRAC University), has been published in the daily Asian age, on August 6, 2021.


The research team is currently drafting an infographic fact sheet and research brief based on key research findings, a policy brief, and several research papers.

Disrupting cross border trafficking in Jessore, Bangladesh Down icon image

PI: Farhana Alam, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Co-PI: Dr Md. Tanvir Hasan, Associate Professor, Co-Director of Research and Co-Director, CUEH, BRAC JPGSPH.
Coordinator: Sophia Kaufman, Project Coordinator, BRAC JPGSPH.
Technical Advisor: Professor Sabina Faiz Rashid, Dean and Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Focal: Farhana Alam, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.


From the month of July to September 2021, several guidelines and observation checklists for collecting qualitative data were developed and finalized for the operational research. Data collection plan for the operational research was developed and shared with BRAC. Several online meetings were also conducted to make the data collection phase more efficient.


Data was collected in three phases through 35 IDIs, 17 KIIs, 7 activities observations, 5 FGDs and 1 informal discussion. During the first two phases of data collection, data was collected through phone interviews.


A six-day long field visit to Jashore was undertaken to observe the implemented activities under this project, and to conduct the FGD sessions with the participants of the activities. Transcription and translation of the phone interview recordings were completed. A draft operational research report was developed and put through several editing phases based on the feedback from the PI and other advisory experts.

As a research partner of BRAC's pilot project named ‘Disrupting Cross Border Trafficking in Jashore’ (DCBT), BRAC JPGSPH conducted Operational Research between July 2021 to September 2021 and submitted the research report on October 2021 to BRAC Migration. The main objectives of Operational Research are to test and assess the effectiveness of the interventions to identify and understand how and why the project is able to achieve its objectives or not, and to inform improvements and recommendations on how to scale up effectively.
After the submission of the Operational Research report, BRAC JPGSPH undertook the end line survey with the objective of assessing if there are any changes in terms of knowledge, attitude, and practices on Cross Border Human Trafficking from baseline to end line. The followings are the bullet point on the process of conducting data collections:


  • - The duration of the end line survey data collection was from 7th November to 18th November 2021.
  • - The duration of the end line survey data collection was from 7th November to 18th November 2021.
  • - The duration of the end line survey data collection was from 7th November to 18th November 2021.

The deadline for this pilot project is 31st December 2021. The research team is currently working on the report writing of the end-line survey with the aim of submitting the report before the deadline of the project.


Updates from January-March 2022

BRAC JPGSPH has shared the endline report with the donor and is waiting for their feedback. BRAC JPGSPH research team is currently working on first paper of baseline-endline study for journal publication.

Accountability and Responsiveness in Informal Settlements for Equity (Arise) Down icon image

PI: Professor Sabina Faiz Rashid, Dean and Director CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Co-PI: Bachera Akter, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Coordinator: Bachera Akter, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.
Implemented by: Centre of Excellence for Urban Equity and Health (CUEH)
Focal: Farhana Alam, Assistant Director, CGSRHR, BRAC JPGSPH.


Objective: To catalyse change in approaches to enhancing accountability and improving the health and wellbeing of poor, marginalised people living in informal urban settlements. ARISE Updates 2019-2020¨ Click here

DISSEMINATION AND UPTAKE OF INTEGRATED NUTRITION MESSAGES FOR SCHOOLS Down icon image

PI: Professor Kaosar Afsana, BRAC JPGSPH
Co-PI: Barnali Chakraborty, Saira Parveen Jolly
Timeline: December 2021 to February 2022
BRAC James P Grant School of Public Health (JPGSPH), BRAC University conducted a research study on “Development of integrated messages for schools” supported by the Food Planning and Monitoring Unit (FPMU) of the Ministry of Food, under the technical support of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations’ Meeting the Undernutrition Challenge (MUCH) project and funded by the European Union (EU). The study developed three sets of impactful integrated nutrition messages encompassing six thematic areas such as healthy diets, nutrition, and immunity; hygiene and sanitary practices; physical activity and lifestyle; and environment for the cover or visible pages of textbooks of primary and secondary school children. These messages ultimately impacted the nutritional status of children and adults. After the success of developing sets of integrated nutrition messages, FAO-MUCH is supporting us to conduct policy research. The next step of the proposed study is to influence the relevant policymakers for publishing the newly framed integrated nutrition messages to the visible pages and cover pages. To achieve the goal of publishing the integrated nutrition messages to the visible pages and cover pages of textbooks of schoolchildren BRAC JPGSPH with the support of FAO-MUCH started lobbying different ministries. As part of the process, for seeking the leadership of the Ministry of Food, BRAC JPGSPH organized two meetings at the office of the Secretary of the Ministry of Food and the office of the Director-General of FPMU. Another meeting will be conducted at the office of the Chairman of the NCTB end of December 2021, for influencing the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MoPME).


Menstrual Regulation, Abortion and Post-Abortion Care among the Rohingya in Bangladesh Down icon image

PI: Professor Kaosar Afsana, BRAC JPGSPH, BRAC University.
Other researchers: - Saira Parvin Jolly, Senior Research Fellow, BRAC JPGSPH; - Md Tahmid Hasan, Research Associate, BRAC JPGSPH; - Ayanti Barua, Research Assistant, BRAC JPGSPH;
Timeline: June 2021 – September 2023
Objective: - To understand the provision of MR, abortion and PAC services in Cox’s Bazar refugee camps - To explore ever-married community members’ knowledge and use of MR, abortion and PAC services through both formal and informal sources, and better understand the role of preferences, stigma and health literacy on women’s abortion-related behavior; and - To contextualize these experiences within the community through understanding the knowledge, attitudes and behaviors of community leaders and men related to the management of unintended pregnancies


Updates from January-March 2022

- Revision of Protocol and Tools based on the piloting experience: The piloting of the tools took place between 27 October 2021 and 15 November 2021 in the Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar. Based on the piloting experience and feedback, we have been revising the protocols and tools since January 2022. The revision process is now at the final stages and hopefully will be ready for submission before mid-April 2022.
- Submission of Report to RRRC: A detailed report was prepared based on the piloting experience and feedback. The preparation of this report began in late November 2021 and it was finalized at the end of January. We submitted the final report to RRRC in the first week of February 2022, both electronic and in hardcopies.


Provision of services to conduct an analysis of nutrition education and SBCC interventions, investment portfolio and document best practices in the IFAD Asia and the Pacific (APR) region Down icon image

Updates from April-June 2022

APRIL: A desk-based review of 5 selected projects of IFAD in Bangladesh,Nepal,India, Kiribati and Laos was done to understand the nutrition specific and sensitive interventions of the programmes tagetted for the vulnerable communities.


MAY: The draft report emerged from the desk-review was shared with IFAD who later provided feedback. Accordingly, revision of the report is ongoing.


JUNE: Primary qualitative data collection will be done in the selected southern coastal areas of Bangladesh where the selected project "Smallholder Agricultural Competitiveness Project(SACP)" is operational.