On the 5th of November, 2022, a team of five young girls from Mirzapur joined CHRF’s ‘Scientists for A Day’ program, having just completed their SSC examinations. All of us from CHRF were excited to welcome them to our laboratories for a day full of science, and fun-filled experiments!
The enthusiastic young students were accompanied by one of their mothers, who is part of CHRF’s amazing group of community health workers in Mirzapur. Tanha, Sinthia, Monia, Tanisha and Fatema reached Dhaka in the early morning. This was their first time visiting a research lab, and their curious minds came up with endless questions about infectious diseases as they explored the colorful and enormous world of microorganisms.
The ’Scientists for A Day’ got to learn how microbiologists help physicians to prescribe the right antibiotics to patients. They also saw live bacteria of yogurt under the microscope, and understood how all bacteria are not harmful to humans. All five students had studied microorganisms in their school books but never had the opportunity to observe them in person – making this a very special moment for them!
An exception to the first batch, the girls had a delightful and surprising encounter with Professor Samir Saha in the microbiology laboratory of Bangladesh Shishu Hospital & Institute (BSHI). Prof Saha was more than happy to spend his work break with the group of young students and provided them with his own insights during their lab briefing. He spoke to them about the wondrous world of microbiology, breaking down the scientific terms in a way that would be easy to understand for the young minds. While engaging with them in a conversation regarding their future career paths, he was taken back to his days as an 11th grade student. Needless to say, all 5 of them choosing science-based fields as their potential careers made him really happy.
As the day reached its end, the students headed back to CHRF headquarters just in time for their certificate-receiving ceremony. Dr. Senjuti Saha made time to join along and sat with the students to have a fun-filled session on their day spent and to convey how fortunate CHRF is to have these young, enthusiastic students come by and spend the day learning and doing science. The girls were quick to mention how they had seen Dr. Saha on the news and how they would love to learn more about her life and journey. While conversing, she emphasised how crucial it is to be an educated and independent woman and how significant education is for every individual regardless of what field they choose to pursue. The ceremony ended amidst taking lots of pictures and saying farewell to two groups of students - another one being a group of undergraduates who had just completed their internship at CHRF.
Our 'Scientists for A Day' expressed their desire to come back to CHRF in the future again and we are also eagerly waiting for that day to come. From all of us at CHRF, we will continue to passionately work towards bringing people to science and building scientists for Bangladesh.