16th World Conference on Tobacco or Health, UAE

The 16th World Conference on Tobacco or Health (WCTOH) was held from March 17th to 21st at Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The theme of this conference was: ‘Tobacco and Non-Communicable Diseases’. The five-day conference consisted of sessions, symposia, plenary and workshops on tobacco related topics.
Mr. Mohammad Shahjahan, Director and CEO of Bangladesh Center for Communication Programs (BCCP) made two important presentations at this conference. One was on “Mentoring and Training in Tobacco Control: A Roadmap for Building Capacity, Sustainability and Future Leaders in Bangladesh” and the other was “Developing Bangladesh Tobacco Control Research Network to support Policy Development and Implementation”.
Mr. Shahjahan mentioned in his presentations that BCCP with technical assistance from JHSPH/IGTC has been providing mentorship and training to enhance capacity of different stakeholders pertaining to the WHO FCTC, MPOWER, the impact of tobacco use on the burden of NCDs, and the challenges and opportunities to contain the tobacco epidemic. He explained that the initiative includes: Implementing the Tobacco Control Research Grant Program through nurturing the grantees and providing mentorship at every step of their research work; including conducting workshops on Research Methodology, Data Analysis, Report Writing and Effective Presentation Skills. He added that BCCP also provided similar input to MTCC, Indonesia.
The second presentation focused on Building and nurturing Bangladesh Tobacco Control Research Network (BTCRN) and Leaders in Tobacco Control Alumni Association to foster a cordial relationship among the members of the association and act as an Advocacy Group for the tobacco control program in Bangladesh, especially in policy development and implementation. The initiative of developing a Network was shared at the Research Network Kick-off Meeting held in April 2013.  More than a hundred participants expressed their solidarity and signed an agreement expressing their interest to be members.
The audience highly appreciated BCCP’s efforts in the field of Tobacco Control and wanted to learn more about these activities. During the Panel Discussion, some attendees requested Mr. Shahjahan for possible future technical assistance in these areas.