JAAGO Foundation UK
JAAGO Foundation UK is a Nourish Bangladesh vetted non-profit that offers Gift Aid for charitable donations made by UK citizens (JAAGO Foundation UK is registered with HMRC). Any donations made here will be directly transferred to JAAGO Foundation UK. Nourish Bangladesh does not receive the funds donated here.
Who is JAAGO Foundation?
JAAGO Foundation is an NGO based in Dhaka, Bangladesh whose mission is to create a Bangladesh free of exploitation, discrimination and violence; and to enable it to reach its ultimate socioeconomic potential through education and youth development. Since 2007 they have gone from serving 17 students in a small room to 3,500 students across Bangladesh. In addition to their education support project, they also run Volunteer for Bangladesh, which provides a platform for 35,000 Bangladeshi youth to get involved in volunteerism. Jaago undergoes regular independent audits and has professional accountants ensuring effective usage of funds. Their Covid-19 response strategy includes both food relief and educational programs.
JAAGO has a very specific and clearly identified relief program, which can feed a family of four for £8.10 per week. They have guaranteed that 100% of the funds we donate will reach the poor, i.e. there is zero overhead cost for their Covid-19 efforts. They have a fairly wide reach in Bangladesh, with previous experience through their established network of schools, along with volunteers currently active in 32 districts.
Responses to Vetting Questions
These responses are based on our correspondences with Ms. Swarupa Haque, Communication Manager, Founders Office, at JAAGO Foundation, and our independent research of information available on their official website. In particular, we focus on JAAGO's general activities and their plans for using the funds donated through our fundraising campaign. We researched and asked the same set of standard questions to the other NGOs we vetted as well.
Question: With our donation, what is the geographical spread of the relief recipient (e.g. Dhaka city, rural Mymensingh, etc.)?
Response: We will reach out to Dhaka City (Rayer Bazar & Karail), Chittagong City, Rajshahi City, rural Gaibandha, rural Madaripur, rural Bandarban, rural Habiganj, rural Dinajpur, rural Rangpur and rural Cox’s Bazar (Teknaf).
Question: With our donation, which groups will be helped (e.g. LGBTQ community, Transgender community, street children, Garo indigenous population, sex workers, gypsy community)?
Response: We help underprivileged families and children in different slums in the above-mentioned areas.
Question: With our donation, will you reach out to the Rohingyas?
Response: Unfortunately, we are unable to reach the Rohingyas at this moment.
Question: Can you give us a price breakdown of how much money is spent towards food relief (e.g. with 1000 taka we offer lentils, rice, onions, and potato for a family of 4 for two weeks) or how much cash is handed to each household (e.g. 1800 taka for each adult in a household)?
Response: We spend 850 Taka (roughly £8.10) on food for one family of four per week which includes rice (5 kg), atta/flour (2 kg), pulse/dal (1 kg), potato (2 kg), Oil (1 liter), salt (1 kg), common medicine (e.g. Tylenol, oral saline), soap (2 bars), and one bag.
Question: We prefer our donations be used for cash transfers or food relief. Nonetheless, what type of other services, if any, other than food relief or cash transfer will be provided with our donations?
Response: The donation will be used for Covid-19 food relief only, and we are distributing dry food instead of transferring cash.
Question: Can you ensure our donation money is spent only on food relief or cash transfer? If not, can you provide a list of services our fund will be used for?
Question: Are you able to customize your food relief or cash transfer efforts based on what we want the donation to be used for?
Response: We have been distributing the same food package for a long time, and it will be a bit difficult for us to customize the package at this moment.
Question: Do you have any mechanism to ensure transparency of exactly where our money is going?
Response: We will send photos from the distribution sites once the process is complete.
Question: Can you give us an estimate of what percentage of our donation is used up in overhead cost i.e. if we donate £1000, what fraction of that will go directly to the poor?
Response: A hundred percent of the donation will go directly to the poor for Covid response.
Question: Is your organization secular or religiously-affiliated? Does this affect who you serve?
Response: We are a secular organization, and we ensure promotion of diversity in every sphere of our work and engagement.
Question: Can you give us a very brief history of your relevant past efforts that makes you uniquely suited to carry out relief efforts in the face of Covid-19?
Response: JAAGO started responding to the pandemic before it hit Bangladesh. As one of the first organizations to have addressed the Covid-19 situation in Bangladesh, we have been distributing masks and arranging awareness programs since February. We started to distribute food and hygiene products to the underprivileged community beginning in March. We aim to reach out to 30,000 families. JAAGO Foundation is also strictly maintaining social distancing and taking appropriate safety measures. We provide gloves, masks, and PPE to ensure the safety of our employees and volunteers. Distribution locations have strict hygiene protocols, and individuals who are receiving the packages have to wait in designated spots.
Question: Do you have any mechanism in place to ensure that you are aware of which households are getting help from the government, so as to avoid overlapping coverage with government efforts?
Response: We are collaborating with local governmental offices (UNO and Chairman) to ensure that there will be no overlapping. We are also collecting information from individuals who are receiving relief packages to ensure no overlapping coverage.
Question: Do you have any results from non-profit assessment organizations (i.e. Givewell)?
Response: We have not been taking part in the assessments so far, however, the NGO Bureau will assess the impact and outcome of this Covid-19 food relief program.