Nothing is more refreshing than a night out with old friends from college for dinner and meeting new people of the same extended alumni. On 17 March 2018, the British Council arranged the BUKAN Gala Night for the registered Bangladesh UK Alumni Network (BUKAN) members residing in Dhaka and treated them to a fun-filled evening of networking and laughter, followed by a grand dinner at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC).
The event was an effort to enrich the Bangladesh UK Alumni Network and unite the UK Alumni in Bangladesh. The gala night was also a follow-up of the month-long digital campaign conducted by the British Council to reach out to the UK alumni residing in Bangladesh and include them in the BUKAN network.
The Gala Night was one of the most long-awaited events for the BUKAN members. The night was brought to life with the presence of around 250 UK Alumni in Bangladesh. Kanbar Hossain-Bor, Deputy British High Commissioner to Bangladesh, graced the vibrant occasion with his presence. David Maynard, Director Education, British Council welcomed the alumni and opened the event with a short message on the British Council’s activities in Bangladesh. The participants were given a summary of BUKAN’s journey and way forward by Towhidur Rahman, Head of Higher Education and Regional Manager, South Asia – CSFP British Council. Sarwat Reza, Head of Cultural Centre, British Council outlined the scope for potential engagement of the alumni. She also facilitated the highlight of the event – Human Library. She divided the audience into small groups. A volunteer from each group was picked out to act as a human book, and each shared their experience about the influence of a woman in their life. Following the Human Library was the most enjoyable part of the night - the standup comedy session by Yamin Khan, one of country’s leading stand-up comedians, and a UK alumnus himself.
Kanbar Hossein-Bor made the closing speech, thanking the alumni for their participation and their keen interest in contributing from their respective positions. He expressed his hope that going forward BUKAN will be able to create a positive impact on Bangladesh's development with the help of its diverse members. The event ended on a high note with the alumni coming together for a group photo and engaging in networking over dinner.
The British Council is always working towards strengthening the Bangladesh-UK relations, and events as these are ideal platforms to engage and exchange cultural and professional values between the two countries. We have received numerous responses from the participants, showing keen interest to work closely with young generations by contributing their UK experiences and professional expertise for the social development of the country. The British Council will be arranging more networking and knowledge events with BUKAN members in the near-future.