“When I returned to Bangladesh from Greece, I was in deep mental shock and hopeless. I could not even understand what my future and livelihood would be. Prottasha project has given a hope to get back in life. I always dreamt of establishing a cattle rearing farm to generate more income to support my family. Prottasha project helped me to establish the farm”, said Musa, a 42 years returnee from Greece. He is one of the beneciaries of Prottasha from Dumuria Upazila (subdistrict) in Khulna.
Musa is now doing good in terms of earning and maintaining the family. While talking to Musa, we came to know his journey to Greece. Like many other poor Bangladeshis, Musa wanted to go to Europe for a better life. He communicated with a middleman and gave him BDT 500,000 (5,952 USD) to migrate in Greece. Musa borrowed some portion of this money from his relatives. He managed the rest of by selling his land.
Musa’s dream seemed true when he traveled to Greece and reached there in 2011. He managed work permit and got a job in an agricultural rm. And, he started to send money to his family. However, the remittance was too low to improve his economic situation. Because he had to give most of the earnings to his relatives to get rid of the debt. Furthermore, Musa had to work long hours at the agricultural farm which cost a lot to his heath. He was getting sick and couldn’t work well during the last days in Greece. Finally, Musa was forcefully sent back to Bangladesh on 18 March 2018 due to his physical illness. And, Musa’s Europe dream came to an end and new challenges came in too.
He was mentally disappointed after coming back to Bangladesh as he couldn’t earn money and manage a good life. Moreover, social pressure made his life complicated. Musa tried to earn money by establishing a grocery shop in a local bazaar (marketplace). But it was not enough to meet his family needs. One day he met Nazma, one of the 1,080 union-based volunteers under the Prottasha project. Musa then came to know the reintegration services of the Prottasha Project. He received counseling support from the project which helped him to get rid of mental pressure. Meanwhile, Musa wished to establish a cattle rearing farm. Prottasha project helped Musa to develop a business plan in this regard. Finally, he received cows as direct in-kind assistance which had a cost of BDT 90,000 (1,071 USD).
Musa said, “I couldn’t even think of establishing an enterprise. Prottasha project made my dream come true. I want to give my special gratitude to BRAC, IOM and the EU for providing me with such kind of support.”