What’s Happening at JITA
Testing Variation of Aparajita Model
With funding from USAID as part of the Bangladesh Nutrition Activity program, JITA and Abt Associates joined hands to establish a sustainable market based model consisting of female last mile sales agents to promote improved nutrition and WASH conditions within their native communities while being economically empowered. JITA brings its years of practical experience in developing and maintaining women sales agent networks to help design a similar sustainable model with certain variations.
This system will include a channel for agriculture produce and another for nutrition as well as WASH products. Additionally a third channel will exist to help these women sustain financial stability, which includes (but not exhausted to) daily essential commodities and farming inputs.
Over the 15 month project duration, JITA will develop a female last mile sales agent network in growth centers under the districts of Khulna and Cox’s Bazar. Under each of the growth centers in each district, JITA intends to activate a team of last mile sales agents.
(Published 24 March, 2021)
Successful Testing of Mobile Haat Prototype
We constantly challenge ourselves in our continuous effort to bridge market access gaps. With funding from USAID under the Bangladesh Nutrition Activity, JITA and Abt Associates collaborated to design and test a unique mechanism that empowers women from rural communities while enabling convenient access to diverse nutritious diets. The first prototype of our 'Mobile Haat' concept was successfully brought to life on the 16th of March, 2021. With our first batch of women entrepreneurs in charge, the model was positively received by the male and female residents of Damodar under Phultala upazilla of Khulna.
(Published 20 March, 2021)
Training Community Health Workers in Netrakona
Between February 16th and March 1st, JITA’s staff facilitated training on business planning and sales for four batches of female frontline health workers from various parts of Netrakona. Under the CARE-GSK partnership, these women were empowered to provide services to improve the maternal, neonatal and child health conditions within their communities. JITA came onboard to strengthen the practical knowledge of the health workers to be able to ensure income sustainability while providing essential services.
(Published: 25 February, 2021)
Relief Program for Aparajitas
As COVID-19 and Cyclone Amphan severely affected the livelihood capacity of our Aparajitas, we tried to spread some positivity on the occasion of Eid. With contributions from staff and individual donors, JITA provided some of its most vulnerable Aparajitas each with a bundle comprising of essential food items. In addition to the products, JITA's field staff also shared important messages around COVID prevention methods and better hygiene practices.
(Published: 27 May, 2020)
JITA Celebrates International Women’s Day 2020
Each of our Aparajita exemplifies the strengths of the human spirit - overcoming unfavorable circumstances and gender stereotypes on a daily basis. They chose the path of an Aparajita for similar reasons, to ease their financial burdens, but together managed to create an enabling environment to thrive in. On this year's International Women's Day, JITA proud to support women like Amena, Ojifa, Shahida, Aktara, Aklima and Kalpana in their journey towards an equal world.
(Published: 8 March, 2020)
JITA Welcomes Delegation from US
An exciting start to the year 2020! In January the JITA team welcomed a philanthropic delegation from the United States and spent some time taking them on a tour of our last mile distribution and economic empowerment operations in Rangpur. The delegation were introduced to our Aparajita women in Badarganj, Rangpur. Our Aparajita shared their stories with enthusiasm and evoked a level of confidence that impressed the guests. Also accompanying the visiting delegation were the CEO of Care Social Ventures, Mark Muckerheide, and representatives from CARE’s social ventures Krishi Utsho - কৃষি উৎস and Living Blue.
(Published: 2 February, 2020)
MOUKA Nationwide Expansion, November – December 2019
Building on the success of empowering women as micro-entrepreneurs in Northern Bangladesh, JITA is preparing to expand its Aparajita model nationwide. The model enables disenfranchised women to receive training, gain access to essential products that they are able to sell and generate a supplemental income.
Throughout the months between November and December, the JITA team organized a series of workshops to invite a shortlisted pool of Hub Managers from our network across Cumilla, Tangail and other regions and encourage them to implement the model in their respective communities. The response received from the field has been highly promising and we are excited at the prospect of creating opportunities and uplifting more women to lead a dignified life.
Aparajita Workshop, 15th July 2018
The day started off with all Aparajitas, Market Development Officers (MDO) and Management Team having hot tea and delicious breakfast together at the venue. The welcoming speech by JITA CEO brought more colors and energy to the day, inaugurating the workshop with more enthusiasm among the participants.
The workshop began with a two-way discussion between Aparajita and Management Team about the challenges faced and feedbacks to overcome those challenges in last mile door-to-door model. Afterwards, JITA Management Team shared sales strategies and product knowledge to develop Aparajitas’ sales and entrepreneurial skill. The workshop involved sales trainings through group work among Aparajitas to make the strategies more vivid in their minds. The training also focused on developing their communication skill. Overall, it was a productive day with everyone enjoying and celebrating the hard work in order to keep the initiative of empowering women moving forward.
Eid-ul-Fitr at Bottola, 21st June 2018
JITA celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr 2018 with the rural community at the Bottola center. Exciting offers were given on the products in the last fifteen days of Ramadan. What made the last fifteen days more exhilarating was the raffle draw coupons, which the buyers received on purchase of products from Bottola. Rafle draw winners were announced on 21st June 2018 when all the winners received eye catching prizes.
Aparajita Muktir Sikkhasofor- Movie at Bottola, April 2018
We finally got the privilege to show this amazing movie to our rural community around our two Bottola centers in Saidpur and Lahirirhaat. More than 1000 people gathered to enjoy this movie. Their positive response made our hard work, effort and dedication fruitful and inspired us to continue our journey in developing and changing the society for betterment.
Bottola Boishakh Mela, 14th April 2018
In the attempt to bring colours and smile on the faces of rural people, JITA has organized Boishakhi Mela at its two Bottolas in Lahirirhaat and Saidpur. The event took place on 14th April. On that day, small stalls of toys, balloons, sweets etc. were set up in front of the Bottola centers. Interesting offers were given for the consumers for purchasing goods from Bottolas from 12th to 14th April 2018. For every TK 100 purchase, a consumer received a lottery ticket. For instance, for TK 300 purchase, an individual received three lottery tickets. Raffle draw winners were announced at the end of the event on 14th April. Winners received attractive prizes like cookeries, home appliances and so on.
JITA’s effort to create a platform for rural people to celebrate a day of togetherness and laughter did not go in vein. In fact, everyone was extremely delighted for becoming a part of such a vibrant occasion.
Aparajita Muktir Shikkha Sofor, April 2018
‘Aparajita Muktir Shikkha Sofor’- This movie is produced by Shiseido in collaboration with JITA Social Business Bangladesh Ltd. The story brings out the struggle a woman has to go through to accomplish her dreams. This movie shows how women in this patriarchal society have to prove themselves in every step they take. It also focuses on the societal barriers that pull girls and women to grow as confident and independent individuals.
Bottola Health Camp 2018 (21st & 23rd February)
Having limited healthcare facility is one of the common problems faced by the people of rural Bangladesh. Experienced doctors can seldom be found in the remote areas which makes it difficult for the rural population to get proper and quality physical treatment. Focusing on this social problem, JITA has aspired to establish healthcare service in Bottola centers. To understand the need and response of the target population JITA has executed Health Camp on 21st and 23rd February in both the Bottola centers at Lahirirhaat and Saidpur, managed by Rupali and Shahnaz Apa respectively.
In the Bottolas, doctors from two different areas were brought – i) Medicine ii) Gynecology. This made easier for patients with regular diseases and women with pregnancy to get quality healthcare from experienced and well-qualified doctors, without traveling far from their homes. There was also the opportunity to check diabetes, test blood group, measure blood pressure and BMI. Furthermore, Aparajitas were given free healthcare services during the event.
JITA DAY, 3rd-7th December 2017
Every year JITA organizes a get together for all employees to share, recognize and celebrate everyone’s dedication and hard work for the organization. Everyone is brought together under one roof from all the regions and together we spend time full of laughter and happiness. This year JITA DAY took place in Cox’s Bazar where everyone got to rejoice in the presence of the beauty and serenity of Bay of Bengal. JITA day is dedicated to all the employees whose hard work, perseverance and devotion keep JITA moving forward. Also, this day is meant to show special gratitude towards Aparajita without whom JITA could not come this far.
Bottola Launching, December 2017
JITA has launched 2 Bottolas, a women-centric community space that serves as a one-stop retail for essential goods & service and solution point for remote rural consumers. These Bottolas are constructed in Saidpur and Lahrirhaat hubs and are run, women.
Bottola is a women-centric community space that serves as a one-stop retail for essential goods & service and solution point for remote rural consumers. Bottola concept is developed to create a high impact distribution model from which Aparajitas are able to learn and capture key entrepreneurial skills which can help them to sustain and scale their own micro-enterprises.
JITA and RSPL Join Hands, August 2017
JITA Bangladesh, a Care and Danone Social Business, has started a prosperous partnership with RSPL Health BD Ltd. for distributing its famous brand Ghari detergent in last mile markets. JITA CEO, Mr. Riad Rouf signed the agreement with RSPL's National Sales Manager, Mr. Arif Iftekhar Pasha.
High officials of the two groups including JITA’s Business Development Lead Mr. Mazed Mahin and Sales Administrator of RSPL Mr. Swadesh Gupta, were also present.The RSPL is famous for its detergent brand Ghari, which is hugely popular in India. The leading Indian conglomerate has initiated moves to market the detergent in Bangladesh. This tie-up will allow RSPL to increase its market share in rural markets and interlink itself more with the lives of the rural population, through JITA’s unique distribution model. JITA is a social business that employs innovative business models to empower women and create access to essential goods to the rural people. It is operating 260 hubs in 27 districts in Bangladesh reaching the 21M bottom of the pyramid consumers.
Partnership with Reckitt, August 2017
Reckitt Benckiser (Bangladesh) Ltd, one the fastest and leading FMCG companies worldwide, signed partnership with JITA Bangladesh on August, 2017. Reckitt is famous for its innovative and quality health, hygiene and home products like Dettol Liquid Antiseptic, handwash, Harpic etc. JITA CEO, Mr. Riad Rouf and RB Managing Director Vishal Gupta signed the contract with utmost believe that this partnership will bring immense impact in the lifestyle of last mile BoP consumers
AVPN, June 2017
AVPN 2017 held on June 7-9 in Bangkok where high impact philanthropist and social investors across Asia gathered. The program includes overview of the social investment landscape in Asia, highlighting key challenges and opportunities across the spectrum of investment stages from grants to impact investment. JITA’s newly joined CEO, Mr. Riad Rouf, participated this year and talked about JITA’s hybrid business model and its mission to create economic empowerment of marginalized women of Bangladesh.