Bizli's Story

Imagine waking in the middle of the night to the sound of water rushing into your home. Your feet, ankles, legs are suddenly enveloped in water – and the water level is still rising.

This is what happened to Bizli the night that flooding hit her village in Bangladesh.

Before that night, life was peaceful for Bizli and her family. Their village is home to a community of fishermen who have a simple and happy existence along the banks of the Brahmaputra River.

Torrential rains

In July and August 2017, torrential rains and floodwater from upstream caused widespread flooding, and rapid river bank erosion, destroying the homes, land and livelihoods of those living along the riverbank.

At first Bizli didn’t know what to do, the fear was paralysing. But as the water continued to rush in, she knew she couldn’t ignore it. Feeling very frightened, Bizli woke her family and managed to get them out of the house.

In no time the water level had risen to shoulder height, but by a stroke of luck Bizli and her family were spotted and rescued by a neighbour in their boat.

Nothing left

The family was left with nothing - their home and all their possessions were completely washed away. Even the land their home was built on collapsed into the river. At first Bizli and her family stayed in the cramped house of another family in their community. The overcrowded conditions and reality of sharing a small house with another family created a sharp contrast to the peaceful life Bizli’s family used to live.

On the ground

ShelterBox responded to the devastating floods in Garuhara and other affected communities in the Kurigram region, helping more families in the same situation as Bizli.

The flooding in Northern Bangladesh was widespread. At its worst, more than a third of the land was submerged. More than 70,000 homes were completely destroyed, and 500,000 were partially damaged.

Working with the Bangladesh Red Crescent and Rotary, ShelterBox provided 3,000 families in need with tarpaulins, mosquito nets and solar lights. These crucial aid items enable families to get on the road to self-recovery.

Your support helps us to reach people like Bizli 365 days of the year. Right now, there are many more families who have lost so much. You can help give them comfort and security in their darkest hour.

Responding right around the world

We support the most remote communities across the world that have been affected by disaster.

We go the extra mile to find the most vulnerable families whose lives have been devastated by disaster. Our work isn’t done until no family is left without shelter.