About Bangladesh

The People’s Republic of Bangladesh, in South Asia, shares borders with India, Myanmar, and the Bay of Bengal. It is the eighth most populous country in the world, home to 164.1 million people, and is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. The capital, Dhaka, its largest city, is also the economic and political center of Bangladesh. The population is ethnically homogeneous, with 98 percent identifying as Bengali, and linguistically homogeneous, with 98.8 percent speaking Bangla (Bengali). Islam is the most commonly practiced religion, making Bangladesh the third largest Muslim-majority country in the world. Bangladesh is known for its famed mangrove forests, home to some of the most fertile soils in the world, and a vibrant ecosystem.

Bangladesh partitioned from India in 1947 to become East Pakistan. A movement based in Bengali nationalism and self-determination led to Bangladesh’s independence as a sovereign nation in 1971. Despite ongoing challenges of corruption, political unrest, a refugee crisis, and the negative effects of climate change, Bangladesh has continued to grow and develop. It is considered an emerging market and has one of the fastest-growing economies, particularly compared to the rest of Asia. Since 2005, the economy has grown about 6 percent annually. About half of Bangladeshis work in agriculture, with rice the largest crop. In addition, the industrial sector features heavily in the economy, and Bangladesh is one of the largest garment exporters in the world. In all, poverty rates decreased from 44 percent in 1991 to 15 percent in 2016, marking a significant improvement.

As economic and development indicators have improved over time, so have Bangladesh’s health indicators. Child mortality in under-five and under-one age groups decreased significantly between 1990 and 2019. Life expectancy has also steadily increased. However, both communicable and non-communicable diseases continue to be leading causes of death, including stroke, ischemic heart disease, COPD, neonatal disorders, lower respiratory infections, diabetes, diarrheal diseases, tuberculosis, cirrhosis, and malignant neoplasms. The risk factors that contribute most to deaths and disabilities include malnutrition, air pollution, high blood pressure, tobacco use, dietary risks, high fasting plasma glucose, high body-mass index, high LDL, drowning, and insufficient water, sanitation, and hygiene.

Nonprofit Landscape

Healthcare Nonprofits in Bangladesh

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Volunteer Opportunities

Centre for the Rehabilitation of the Paralysed - CRP

Rehabilitation and physiotherapy volunteers for Bangladesh


Savar, Bangladesh

HOPE Foundation for Women and Children of Bangladesh

Physicians and Medical Volunteers - HOPE Hospital (Bangladesh)


Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh


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