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since April 1998




BICN 7-20 Dec 2000

Volume 4 Number 7

From the Editor

Feature Article

A Life-Saving Investment - The ICDDR,B Hospital Endowment Fund

This Issue's Sponsors (Commercial Advertising)

Offered For Sale - Easy Bangla Software for Foreigners & Bangladeshi Children Abroad

To Let - Ground Floor of Gulshan House

For Rent - Large Baridhara Apartments

Help Wanted - Public Relations Coordinator at AIS/D

Contemporary Bengali Instruction

Ecotours to the Bandarban Hills: Special Package for Dhaka Expats

Community Announcements

Events Calendar, Dhaka & Beyond


Non-Commercial Advertisements

Next issue submission deadline Tue 19 Dec 2000.

(c) BICN. Items may be freely reprinted with this attribution: "Source: Bangladesh International Community News ( / )."

See end of message for un/subscription, advertising, and other details.

From the Editor 

Is it just me, or is this holiday season even MORE frantic than usual!?! Well, I have no doubt whatsoever that you are all surviving more gracefully that I, but in case you need them, here are my holiday survival rules:

1. Messy cookies made by four year olds taste better than perfect cookies made by a grown up.

2. Given a choice, your friends and your family would pick *you* - your smiles, your hugs and kisses, and your time - over any boxed-up gift you could give them.

3. It doesn't matter if the ornaments are hanging from the dog's ears if your kids are happy.

4. For many of us, the winter holidays can be a sad and discouraging time: Too-high expectations - too much to do - conflicts within the family (now or in the past) - the anniversary of a family loss... Try this: Give a BIG charitable donation to your church or a social welfare organization you admire. See if you don't feel MUCH better about yourself and the world.

Feature Article

A Life-Saving Investment - The ICDDR,B Hospital Endowment Fund

Patients who enter the ICDDR,B Treatment Centre in Mohakhali, popularly known as the Cholera Hospital, are treated free of charge. At minimal cost, the Hospital provides receive accurate diagnosis, oral rehydration solution (ORS), intravenous fluids, antibiotics, nourishing meals, nutritional guidance, and practical guidelines for remaining healthy after they go home.

The Hospital has saved many lives. As one young unemployed engineer testified, "I had spent much of my savings going from one doctor to another, but it was only here at the Cholera Hospital that my child received the help she needed. I like the way the doctors and nurses treat us here, and my daughter is now well."

Today 350-600 new patients are seen at the Hospital daily and treated for their life-threatening illnesses at less than USD15, with patients paying only a Tk10 registration fee. During the floods of 1998, the Hospital treated over 190,000 very sick people.

The Hospital is a charitable organization. It cannot use research funds and is not receiving enough Government funding to pay for patient care, even though it has an international reputation as one of the best infectious diseases hospitals in the world. In 1991, the Hospital Endowment Fund was begun with local contributions, and these now pay for almost a month's worth of treatment annually. To cover operating costs for the remaining 11 months of each year, we are seeking support from resident and non-resident Bangladeshis, and from resident and non-resident foreigners committed to supporting Bangladesh development and social welfare. Tax receipts for donations from USA and UK contributors are now available through partner charitable organizations in those countries. US contributors can make out their checks to Child Health Foundation, then:

  • Outside Bangladesh, mail it  to Child Health Foundation, 10630 Little Patuxent Pkwy, Centruy Plaza Ste 126, Columbia Maryland 21044. 
  • In Bangladesh, hand deliver or courier to Office of Finance, ICDDR,B, Airport Rd Mohakhali Dhaka.

In this festive winter holiday season, we ask that you consider making a charitable cash donation to the Hospital Endowment Fund, or, if you prefer, supporting our fundraising activities by:

Donating raffle prizes

  • Purchasing raffle tickets - great stocking stuffer!
  • Purchasing tickets for the River Cruise to Matlab on January 20 (Tk1500 each) - holiday gift possibility for your family and friends
  • Purchasing tickets for the ICDDR,B Ball on 2 Feb (Tk1500 each, available at the Sonargaon) - another holiday gift option
  • Arranging a treatment ward tour for your club or other organization

To donate, purchase tickets, arrange a tour, or for more information, contact ICDDR,B at 988-1626 or email . Many thanks for your support!

This Issues's Sponsors

Offered for Sale - Easy Bangla Software for Foreigners & Bangladeshi Children Abroad

Easy Learn Bangla software by '212 Soft Bangladesh' will help you learn Bangla by yourself at home in a short time. It is very user friendly and fun to play with; foreigners who tested it for us gave us very positive responses. . Features of the program include:

  • Introduction to the Bangla language
  • Bangla alphabet and numbers, with animated writing order, scientific pronunciation, and automatic English-to-Bangla number conversion
  • Easy Bangla Grammar, a simplified approach to Bangla Grammar
  • Useful daily conversations - useful daily conversations such as greetings, getting around, food and restaurants, asking directions, around town, making hotel reservations, shopping, talking on the telephone, emergencies, Bangla proverbs etc.

To run the software, you need to have a computer with Windows 95 +, Pentium processor, 16Mb RAM, and 6 Mb free hard disk space.

To purchase, visit Aarong's Dhanmondi or Tejgaon outlets; or email to arrange delivery to your home or office (by courier to international addresses). Software price net of shipping is Tk1000 / USD18. For more information, please contact Dr. Aminul Karim Chowdhury, 212 Soft Bangladesh, S/25 Noorjahan Rd, Mohammadpur, Dhaka-1207, Bangladesh, tel +880(2)8115958, cell 018-239711

To Let - Ground Floor of Gulshan House

1. Ground floor of two-storey house available for lease or rent 2. Situated within 100 yards of Danish, German and Australian Embassies 3. Built on 1/3 acre plot 4. Has large well- maintained lawn that is covered with roses and other seasonal flowers, can be used for large receptions 5. Ground floor has independent entry into the house 6. Ground floor consists of:

o Three bedrooms with dressing room and bath/toilet attached o Drawing room o Study room with attached bath/toilet o Dining room o Kitchen o Veranda inside o Garage o Servant quarters o Separate bath/toilet facility for servants, separate servant's gas connection for cooking can also be provided if desired

This accommodation will be available late November or early December. Please contact: Zainul H. Khan, res tel 882 1563, office tel 891 2440 or 891 7864, fax 882 3627.

Large Baridhara Apartments for Rent

Two 3,000 sft apartments with 3 bed rooms with attached bathrooms, spacious family lounge, living and dining space, big kitchen, walk in pantry, laundry room, south facing balconies, maid's room, stand-by generator, and 2 covered parking spaces each are available on Dutabash Road, Baridhara. The apartments are close to the British High Commissioner's and Japanese Ambassador's residences. For terms and inspection, please call 956-5209 (day) or 988-1666 (evening & weekend) or email 

Help Wanted - Public Relations Coordinator at AIS/D

The American International School/Dhaka is seeking applicants for a short-term public relations consultancy with the school. The position would entail developing a public relations plan for the school and implementing the initial stages of that plan. Approximately 160 hours of work are required, flexibly scheduled. Compensation is at the Secretary pay scale, level 5, pro-rated. Final report to be submitted by April 15, 2000.

Deadline for applications is December 20.

Contact Cecilia Johnson, AIS/D Personnel Officer, for a job description and application form. AIS/D telephone 882-2452, 882-2860

Contemporary Bengali Instruction

Nondita Chowdhury offers Bengali instruction to individuals and groups:

+Course 1, Survival Bangla - 20 2-hour sessions focusing on speaking and understanding

+Course 2, Basic Bangla - 20 2-hour sessions with the introduction of reading and writing

+Individual instruction - tailored to students needs

Courses run for five days per week over four weeks and cost Tk6000 per person for groups of two to seven, or Tk7500 for one person, includes all materials. Individualized instruction is also available at Tk400/hour per person. Ms Chowdhury was principal of Heed Language Centre (1991-97), and has over 20 years experience in Bengali instruction. Lessons given at her school in Gulshan or learner's home or office. For more information, call Ms Chowdhury at 8020650, or email , include your name & telephone number.

Ecotours to the Bandarban Hills: Special Package for Dhaka Expats

Dying to escape Daffy Dhaka? International vacation breaks worn you out? Join us in the Bandarban Hills in southeastern Bangladesh and visit the easygoing Mru people, boat along the Sangu river, walk through verdant hills, stay in a hilltop cottage, imbibe a little moonshine, and sway to hypnotic Mru music!

Dhaka expats booking one month in advance in groups of 3-6 qualify for up to 25% discounts. Profits go directly to indigenous projects.

Contact Reng Yu, your tour coordinator, anytime at or mobile 018-318345, or click  

Community Announcements 

Teams Sought for "Tug of War Competition" at the BWA/DWAC Christmas Bazaar

Too slow for the Dhaka Relay Marathon? Never made the six a side soccer team? Then this is for you: enter a tug of war team at the Christmas Bazaar on the 8th December from 1pm to 4pm! Rules:

  • Teams will comprise 8 people including at least one lady 
  • Substitutions allowed between pulls 
  • Best of three pulls 
  • Straight knock out competition.

Enrolment fee Tk500 per team. Late entry on day space permitting. All proceeds to the BWA/DWAC supported charities. Fantastic prizes for winning team. Sponsors wanted! Email to reserve a team place.

Social Volleyball

At the ARA every Saturday 3-5pm, for adults & high school students.

Events Calendar, Dhaka & Beyond 

To have your Bangladesh-related event - in Dhaka or anywhere else in the world - included in the next Event Calendar, please email the time, date, place, description, and email contact address to  by Tues 14 Nov 00.

All events are in Dhaka unless otherwise noted. Entry to some events is restricted, eg to members - contact event organizers for more information.

Early December

Wed-Sat 6-9 Dec - Dhaka Stage presents "Wyrd Sisters" by Terry Pratchett, ISD Bashundhara at 8pm.

Fri 8 Dec - Second Advent Church Service, Dhaka International Christian Church, meets at the Korean Church, Bashundhara, 4:30pm. Following the service at 5:45pm, all are invited to bring and share Christmas cuisine from you own cultures or traditions for a shared finger buffet. Then at 6:30pm international Christmas presentations by different national communities who will present some aspect of their seasonal celebrations.

Fri 8 Dec - InterClub Tennis Final. C league, 10:30am ARA. B league, 10am Intl Club. A league, 2pm Intl Club.

Fri 8 Dec - BWA & DAWC Big Charity Christmas Bazaar & Fair at the French School Playing Field (entrance on Park Rd). 1pm-4pm. Tickets Tk50 at the gate, under 3's free. Games, entertainment, Santa Claus and elves, handicrafts, tambola, raffle, book sale, bake sale, Santa's Grotto, white elephant sale, tug of war, over 45 invited vendors & refreshments! Fun for all!!!!

Sat 9 Dec - Canadian Club children's Christmas party. Sat 9 Dec - AIS/D Clothing Bazaar, old gym, 10a-2p, Tk10/entry.

Sat 9 Dec - Cellist Phillip Hazra & Pianist Shanta Gunsekera classical duet recital. 7:30pm. Flat 5N, House 4, Road 84, Gulshan. Mr Hazra and Ms Gunasekera teach strings and piano respectively to students in Dhaka. Admission to the recital is free, voluntary donations will be accepted toward the costs of cancer treatment for Mr Hazra's mother.

Sun 10 Dec - UNWA Newcomer's Coffee, 3:30pm, email UNWA for venue.

Sun 10 Dec - Combined holiday concert, International School Dhaka canteen, 7pm. Dhaka Chorus & Morning Sky will perform. Voluntary donation.

Tue 12 Dec - DAWC Monthly Luncheon, ARA 12:30pm. USD5/person.

Tue 12 Dec - UNWA Executive Committee, email for venue.

Wed 13 Dec - UNWA Seasonal Party at ICDDR,B Guesthouse, starts at Iftar timing. "For the first time in over 15 years, three religions hold their major celebrations within the week of December: the Hanukkah on the 22nd, Christmas on the 25th, and Eid on the 27th. Families throughout the world are gathering to give thanks, presents, and share food, music, and prayers. The UNWA Seasonal Party will allow UNWA members to share cherished traditions." Event features traditional songs, a buffet dinner, and an exchange of wrapped gifts (Max Tk50) between UNWA members. Reservations must be made by 9 Dec, by sending Tk500 in a sealed envelope to one of the organizers - email for delivery addresses.

Thu 14 Dec - BAGHA Craft Fair 4-8pm. Entry free.

Fri 15 Dec - Third Advent Church Service, Dhaka International Christian Church, meets at the Korean Church, Bashundhara, 4:30pm. Following at 7pm, there will be an informal carolling evening at a private residence (email or for venue, or ask at the church service), bring a plate of finger food to share.

Fri 15 Dec - BAGHA Jazz Night. Free for BHC & BAGHA members, other expat club card holders + 1 guest Tk50/entry at the gate.

Fri 15 Dec - DAWC Children's Christmas Party, ARA 2-4pm. For kids 0-10 years [NOTE the upper age limit has increased from 8 to 10]. DAWC kids free, other expat club card member's kids Tk100/kid. Tickets at the door. Santa, games, cookie decorating, jr. tambola, more.

Fri 15 Dec - BWA Christmas Murder Dinner. Closing date for tickets 7 Dec, some tables still available, email to book!

Starts Fri 15 Dec - Chobi Mela Asian Photography Exhibition at the National Museum. There's now a great website for this event at . Email .

Sat 16 Dec - Victory Day (Bangladesh holiday).

Mon 18 Dec - BAGHA Christmas Quiz, 8pm. Tk100/entry, all proceeds to charity.

Mon 18 Dec - DAWC event, American community traditional evening of Christmas carolling, email for venue. DAWC members, please bring a sweet or savory dish to share.

Tue 19 Dec - Submission deadline for next issue of BICN.

Late December & Beyond

Thu 21 Dec - First Christmas Re-enactment. Ever wondered what it would be like to be in Bethlehem, Year 0? You are encouraged to invite friends to participate (yes, dress up)) for this re-enactment. Free tickets (attendance limited to 120) are available from Grace International School or Dhaka International Christian Church (meets 4:30pm Fridays at the Korean Church). Tickets give full details.

Thu 21 Dec - Jamat-ul-Bida (Bangladesh holiday, subject to moon).

Fri 22 Dec - Fourth Advent Church Service, Dhaka International Christian Church, meets at the Korean Church, Bashundhara, 4:30pm.

Fri 22 Dec - Hanukkah

Sun 24 Dec - Shab-e-Qudar (Bangladesh holiday, subject to moon).

Sun 24 Dec - Singing by Candlelight, at the Australian High Commission Club. Bring your own candle & wax guard.

Sun 24 Dec - DICC Christmas Eve Open House, 7:30pm after AHC carolling. Private residence, email for venue.

Mon 25 Dec - Christmas (Bangladesh holiday).

Mon 25 Dec - Christmas Day Service, 10:30am, venue TBA. Bring a plate of sweet eatables to share. Email for more info.

Wed-Sat 27-30 Dec - Eid-ul-Fitr (Bangladesh holiday, subject to moon).

December: Convention, TechTransfer-2000:Bangladesh (TT2000:BD). See BICN V4 N3 for details. Info email .

Sat 6 Jan, New Orleans, LA - Association for Economic Development Studies on Bangladesh (AEDSB) session at the Allied Social Science Associations meeting January 5-7. AEDSB session title, "Efficiency vs. Equity: Emerging Issues in Capital and Labor Markets in Bangladesh." Presiding: Erik Thorbecke, Cornell University, M. Kabir Hassan, University of New Orleans, Anisul M. Islam, University of, Houston - Downtown, and Syed Abul Basher, York University, Canada.

Sat 7 Jan - Orthodox Christmas, services at the Armenian Church in Old Dhaka.

Sun 10 Jan - BWA Monthly Meeting at 3pm, talk by Angie Roques from the British Council about nursing in Bangladesh. Email for venue.

Sat-Tue 14-16 Jan - UK Trade & Education Fair 2001. Dhaka Sheraton. For trade info email Jon Geddes, Commercial Section, British High Commission Dhaka, . For education info, contact Ripa Walie, education Promotion Manager at British Council Dhaka, .

Sat 20 Jan - ICDDR,B Hospital Endowment Fundraiser, River Cruise to Matlab. Tk1500/person, families welcome. Day will include speed boat rides, bazaar shopping, fishing, and other family fun. Leave Mohakhali at 7am, return 9pm. Contact for tickets. These tickets make great holiday gifts!

Sun 21 January - UNWA newcomer's tea, 10.30am. Email for venue.

Fri 2 Feb - Annual ICDDR,B Endowment Fund Ball, Sonargaon Hotel. Tk1500/person. Reserve a table of 10 now by contacting ICCDR,B External Relations at 988-1626. Raffle tickets @ Tk25, book of four @ Tk100 will be available and announced shortly. Raffle tickets make great holiday gifts!

Wed 7 Feb - BWA Annual General Meeting at 3pm. Talk & photo exhibition - details to be finalised at a latter date. Email for venue.

February - Street Children's Party, BAGHA Club.

Wed 7 Mar - BWA Monthly Meeting. Email for details.


** Chobi Mela Photography Exhibition Website

Looks great - at: 

** HIV/AIDS in Bangladesh - 2000 Update

"Epidemiological fact sheet on HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections, 2000 update - Bangladesh" is now available online ( 336kb .pdf) at: 

Non-Commercial Advertisements 

Always free in BICN - personal classified ads, this means ads to buy or sell personal household items, to hire or place household staff. For security/privacy reasons, ads contain only names and email addresses - residential addresses and phone numbers are not normally published.

FOR SALE: "I have a quarter size child's violin that I would like to sell. This instrument is a Suzuki No. 220, manufactured in 1996, and purchased new in London by AIS/D music teacher and musician Teri Khan for over USD300. I purchased it from her in 1999 for USD250 and my daughter Ariel used for one year under Philip Hazra's instruction 1999-2000. Ariel has moved on to the piano, and it seems a shame to leave the violin lying idle if there is a child that would like to take violin lessons. The price is Tk12,000, email to make arrangements to see the instrument. Includes violin, bow, rosin, chin rest, all in a hard shell case with zippered canvas weather cover." Email .

FOR SALE: Nordic Trak Pro cross-country skiing exercise machine. Like new condition, asking USD500. Email .

EMPLOYMENT SOUGHT: If you need a bearer/cook, I'd like to find my hard-working day member of staff new employment. Shahajada is a pleasant, hard-working, honest and responsible individual who undertakes household tasks well. He understands English well and can read and write. Contact Mahmood on 018 220814 or by email at 

TRACING A FRIEND: "I am trying to trace my best friend's whereabouts. I have not seen him for 26 years, I miss him very much as he was more than a brother to me. His name is Kawsar Ali (Ranju), and he was my best friend while I attended Dhaka University in 1967-72. "Ranju, if somehow, you get this e-mail, please contact me at email  , tel +1(612)677-5419, fax +1(612)667-9712, or write me at Wells Fargo Equipment Finance, Investors Building, Suite 300, 733 Marquette Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55402, USA."

COMPUTER MONITOR WANTED: Colour or B&W 14/15 inch monitor in workable condition wanted, to be fitted to an old 386 PC. If you have such a monitor for sale, email  .

FOR SALE: Basketball backboard (slightly smaller than regulation), hoop and net (both regulation). Brand new. Would make a great Christmas gift. USD50 or Tk2700. Email for more information:  .

FREE TO GOOD HOME: three healthy well-groomed dogs to be given away. One 18 month old female, fully vaccinated. Two males, one 18 months old, one five months old, both fully vaccinated, older one is neutered. They come from a good home and wish to give them to a good home. Email  .

SEARCHING FOR SOMEONE: "I am trying to contact Shejuti Daulah from Dhaka, Bangladesh. My wife and I met her in January 1999 at ANZ Bank where she was working. I would greatly appreciate if anybody knows her and they can forward my message. Thank you, Mohammed Amin - email  .."


BICN is a free email newsletter published first & third Wednesdays, September to May, from Dhaka Bangladesh. Sara Bennett, Editor.

Contact Info - Email all inquiries & items to . BGD tel +880(2)988-1708, USA fax +1(978)418-8132, mail H28 R4 Blk C, Banani Dhaka.

Always Free - Personal ads to buy and sell personal items, hire/place household staff, lost & found, sublets. Also Free: announcements, letters to the editor, press releases, & articles. And of course subscribing!

Economical Ads - 

  • Offer your apartment/house/land for rent or sale 
  • List employment available or sought 
  • Offer products/services for sale

Ads cost only USD8 (Tk450) for up to 100 words, half price for repeats booked with the original order. BICN accepts payment by credit card via (secure payment online & offline worldwide), CAD/USD/BDT check, and BDT cash, with payment pick up for reasonable Dhaka addresses.

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