Productive Employment Programme
(Formerly Productive Employment Project-RD-5)
A Model Poverty Alleviation Programme of BRDB
Bangladesh Rural Development Board (BRDB)
Productive Employment Programme was launched as a project named Rural Development-5 (RD-5) Project (PEP) in 1986-87 as one of the project of Rural Employment Sector Programme (RESP) under by joint financial support of Sweden and Norway. Firstly the project stared with 6 Upazilas, two in each of Faridpur, Madaripur and Kurigram district and in 1988-89 the activities of the project expanded another 4 Upazilas of Madaripur and Kurigram district. Productive Employment Project (PEP) continued its activities in 27 Upazilas under greater Faridpur district only by the financial support of SIDA from July, 1996 and the project completed its activities successfully on 30th June, 2003. Now the Project activities are continuing as a programme of BRDB named Productive Employment Programme (PEP) on self-finance basis from July, 2003 to till now. The objective of Productive Employment Programme (PEP) is to improve the socio-economic position of the landless people organizing them in informal groups.
The Productive Employment Programme (PEP) is a poverty alleviation programmes of Bangladesh Rural Development Board (BRDB). It has been in operation in 27 upazilas of 5 districts of greater Faridpur, namely Faridpur, Rajbari, Madaripur, Gopalgong and Shariatpur. Framed in
conformity with strategy for rural development and objective of the national plan and sector targets, the programme ensures catering of well-
balanced social and economic elements for its beneficiaries. Besides, given to be run with its own income, the programme displays a fair degree of
sustained achievement which is in a sense a pioneering venture in contemporary history of rural development.
This unique achievement of the programme is a legacy from Productive Employment Project or RD-5 Project. Here a brief evolutionary history of
the ancestral project needs to be elucidated. The origin of ancestral project dates back to initiation of Intensive Rural Works Programme (IRWP)
implemented during 1981-86 by LGED. The principal objectives of IRWP were to build physical infrastructure and to create employment opportunities.
Over the years the objective of developing infrastructure was significantly achieved by IRWP.But the objective related to creation of sustained / long term employment opportunities for the rural poor could not be attained. During the Annual Review Mission for IRWP in 1983, Sida and Norad , the donors from two Scandinavian countries Sweden and Norway generously supported GoB to launch a follow-up programme named Rural Employment Sector Programme(RESP) with two components namely i .Infrastructure Development Project and ii. Productive Employment
Project. The project was initially launched in a low profile in 1986 / 87. The 1stphase of the project continued up to June 1990 with funding from Norway
and Sweden . July 1990 to June 1996 constitutes 2nd phase of the project. Norway withdrew from supporting the programme after 2nd phase. The 3rd
phase started in July 1996 in 27 upazilas of grater Faridpur district with exclusive sida funding and was initially planned to last up to 2000.
However in order to consolidate on the achievements so far attained and to provide a solid foundation towards transformation in to a self-financed
programme like the present one, the period of third phase was extended up to June 2003.
In fact the period 2000/03 was the preparatory phase for the project to be launched as self-financed programme. Gradual accumulation of experiences,
flexibility in planning and well documented subjects, guidelines /instructions in the field led to further improvements and refinements to the strategies and gave a clear sense of direction to transform the project into a sustainable programme. In doing so the needs and demands of the
target groups and the possibility that the programme can be replicated by other Rural Poverty Alleviation Projects /Programmes in BRDB were taken in
to consideration. Now the activities of PEP are continuing as a Programme of BRDB named Productive Employment Programme (PEP) on self-finance basis from July, 2003 to till date. The Programme (PEP) in gradually strengthirly forming own surplus fund. After met up all expenditure, PEP is earning a
hand some amount of money at the end of every financial year.