Speaker of parliament Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury was the chief guest of the event while planning minister MA Mannan, director general of NGO Affairs Bureau KM Tariqul Islam, chief executive officer of HSBC Bank Bangladesh Md Mahbubur Rahman and national director of SOS Children's Villages Bangladesh Md Enamul Haque were present.
In the opening speech, national director of SOS Children's Villages Bangladesh Md Enamul Haque said SOS Children's Village started its journey in Bangladesh in 1972 to ensure the protection of children who lost their families after the liberation war. Since then, it has been providing quality alternative care to parentless and at-risk children for over 50 years.
Apart from this, SOS also works to increase the capacity of families so that children do not get separated from their families due to poverty or any other reason. All our programs are guided by the United Nations Charter on the Rights of the Child and the Alternative Care Guidelines. Children's best interests are the first consideration when determining alternative care options and child protection is ensured, he added.
Chief guest Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury said prime minister Sheikh Hasina has been working tirelessly for the welfare of children, but establishing a humane world for children requires government initiatives as well as private philanthropic organisations and private cooperation.
She hoped that various private institutions would come forward for great work like the welfare of children. The success of SOS Village is that the children of Shishupolli are able to reach their suitable fields with skills and confidence, the Speaker said.
Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury thanked the mothers of the organisation for providing comprehensive services to the children.
At the event, planning minister handed over the "SOS Children's Villages Bangladesh Community Champion Award" to nine prominent citizens of Bangladesh for their contribution to the positive change of the society.
Recipients of the award are PHP Group chairman Alhaj Sufi Mizanur Rahman, actress Ajmeri Haque Bandhan, philanthropist Begum Majeda Ali, microbiologist Senjuti Saha, AFDB president Mantasha Ahmed, Ahmed Food managing director Minhaj Ahmed, national cricket team selector Kazi Habibul Bashar, Ritu Health and Wellbeing Foundation founder Sharmin Kabir and Rajshahi University vice chancellor professor Golam Sabbir Sattar.
‘’Pride of SOS Children's Villages Bangladesh Award" were also given to eight care leavers who grew up in alternative family-like care of SOS Children's Villages Bangladesh. All of them are well-established in their respective fields in the society and are engaged in the professions of teacher, doctor, nurse, other professionals etc.
Members of SOS Children’s Villages, invited guests and officials of the parliament secretariat and members from different media were present at the event.