Fortified by the goodwill, support and hard work of many and her own perseverance and ability to foster partnerships, civil rights lawyer Moushumi “Mou” Khan launched the Foundation for Charitable Activities in Bangladesh, a new style of non-governmental aid organization, in 2014 after her father initially incorporated it in the U.S.

After doing all the legal things required to set up a nonprofit that raises money in the U.S. to provide aid in Bangladesh, FCAB conducted a comprehensive baseline assessment of the village of Bagdumur — Mou’s late father’s ancestral village. Next, it crafted a four-pronged approach to holistically address Bagdumur’s development needs. Medical care, education, livelihood and water and sanitation needed to integrated solutions with meaningful impacts on the population.

FCAB was founded by the late Abdul Majid Khan, a Bangladeshi-American engineer who left his homeland in 1976 to pursue graduate studies at the University of Michigan School of Engineering. A father of four who co-founded Ann Arbor’s first mosque, Mr. Khan died in an automobile accident shortly after filing FCAB’s legal paperwork for a tax-exempt non-profit status with the United States Internal Revenue Service and with plans to incorporate as an aid organization in Bangladesh.

Carrying her late father’s vision forward, Mou Khan tackled the challenge of creating better lives for Bagdumur residents with modern methodologies. Everything FCAB does is measured, managed and monitored with a focus on collaboration with local public and private sector partners. The effectiveness and service reach of each initiative is calculated and documented. The best available people are recruited for the advisory board and local management team

Most importantly, the assistance offered is culturally sensitive to local behavioral norms, and yet has a sustainable vision for the future. FCAB’s guiding principle is to forge lasting progress in Bagdumur, not to create patronage dependency in the outdated style of late 20th century NGOs which uncomfortably modeled British colonialism and American welfare.

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