2015 World Food Prize Laureate Sir Fazle Hasan Abed of BRAC
In a post on their Crop Biotech Update, CGNET partner ISAAA (International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications) made special note of Sir Fazle Hasan Abed as the 2015 World Food Prize Laureate. Sir Fazle will be the recipient of $250,000 from the World Food Prize foundation for his work battling poverty and hunger in his native Bangladesh and ten other countries throughout the world.
The World Food Prize is awarded in recognition of “the achievements of individuals who have advanced human development by improving the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.” Dr. Norman Borlaug founded the Prize in 1986 to promote and reward the dedication of agricultural scientists and activists to the cause of ending world hunger.
Fazle Hasan Abed, KCMG, is the founder and head of one of the largest non-profit organizations in the world, the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC). BRAC’s staff of over one hundred thousand employees has provided aid and education to tens of thousands of villages in Bangladesh, and established offices abroad as well. Sir Fazle has lead the organization for over forty years, and adds this honor to his already extensive list of accolades. Upon receiving the Prize, he singled out the hard work of his organization and the people they support:
“The real heroes in our story are the poor themselves and, in particular, women struggling with poverty. In situations of extreme poverty, it is usually the women in the family who have to make do with scarce resources. When we saw this at BRAC, we realized that women needed to be the agents of change in our development effort. Only by putting the poorest, and women in particular, in charge of their own destinies, will absolute poverty and deprivation be removed from the face of the earth.”