I am much honored to be part of the Jalalabad Association of America, Inc as its 12th General Secretary. At the outset, I would like to convey my heartfelt gratitude to all members for choosing our team to work for this outstanding organization. I respectfully recognize the altruistic tasks performed by the founders and all our predecessors to bring the organization in today’s stature. It is my greatest honor to be working with our President to lead a 14,000 member strong Association that also represents the aspiration of more than 100,000 immigrants originating from greater Sylhet region.
Our Association's mission is to “promote the wellbeing of the people of greater Sylhet region living in America through their socio-cultural and economic development". I am very excited to share the rich and glorious heritage of greater Sylhet to the mainstream American culture and to other communities around us.
My involvement with Jalalabad Association is long. Through the years I have closely observed the strides we have made and the changes, as well as the challenges we have faced. I promise, whatever we do, will be done with “unity & inclusiveness”, “honesty & integrity”, “respect & accountability” – all these being the Association’s core values.
Like most of you, I am a simple man with simple ideas. However, that in no way prevents us having some brilliant dreams that we are capable of materializing collectively. Being a true community worker, I have decided to devote the majority of my term to understand, address and resolve the issues and needs of our community. Your suggestions and comments will be of utmost value and we will try to incorporate them to make Jalalabad Association of America, Inc a great organization.
I have always made efforts to bring our Association to new heights. Your trust and relentless support shows greater opportunity in front of our committee to attain the mid and long-term goals. Our Executive Committee is fortunate to have a very dedicated personality as Mr. Badrul H Khan leading us. The subsequent paragraphs state goals that we hope to accomplish in mid and long terms under his leadership.
We want to help prosper the indigenous culture of Jalalabad and its interaction with the US culture. We plan to establish “Jalalabad Information & Cultural Centres” in New York by 2016 and organize activities that support mainstream cultural development.
We are to facilitate the education of immigrant children. Our goal is to establish the “Bangla School of New York” and the associated library facilities in the “Jalalabad Information & Cultural Centre”. We plan to introduce scholarship for Bangladeshi American immigrants in the United States "without distinction of locality, sex or creed".
The Association intends to provide professional development opportunities through career development and job placement supports and organize training, workshop and job fairs at the Association’s facilities. A big yet ambitious steps in this will be creating internship opportunities in mainstream workplaces for our next generation. I have started working on this and assure you to create this scope for young and energetic students by year 2015.
I am very much in favor of promoting effective leadership that can be engaged in mainstream US political activities. We must encourage community members registering them as voters and involving in mainstream political programme. We will prepare the young and talented professionals to serve as elected members of the City, State, and Federal Government.
Besides, I aim to increase the membership of Jalalabad Association. This can effectively be done with your help. I plead you to ask your friends and family to join the Association either as ‘Life’ or ‘General’ members. We have made the membership forms available in the website and you can complete the process online in a couple of minutes only.
Acquiring a permanent office for the Association, where we can hold meetings, house the Bangla School cum library, conduct the training workshops, gather on social occasions, and keep our files organized is a significant goal in this term for our team.
We are happy to inform you that the Association has recently received thirty kidney dialysis machines donated by Drexel University. This was made possible by the altruistic efforts of Dr Zia Uddin Ahmed and the Association leaders. Initially, we plan to start the International kidney and Hypertension Center in Sylhet with 10 machines. We plead your support and contribution as we intend to engage the doctors and healthcare professionals living in the US in this endeavor.
There are still many more ideas and opportunities for the coming days. Let us start with the ones that have been mentioned above and move on with them, while adding more during the course of the year. I feel that Jalalabad Association of America, Inc is more than an organization; it is a movement of our cultural heritage. With your help and motivation our team is ready for an exciting endeavor, lying ahead of us.
Thank you once again for your confidence in me by electing me to become the President of this marvelous association.
Jewel Chowdhury, General Secretary
Jalalabad Association of America, Inc.
Jewel Chowdhury is the elected General Secretary of Jalalabad Association of America, Inc. He is also the Delegate Assembly for the Hotel and Motel Trade Council Union, Local 6. He works at the prestigious Pierre Hotel since 1992. He is also an active member of the Queens Community Board 2 since 2002. He is one of the members of Principle Executive Committee of the Optimists. Besides, Jewel Chowdhury leads numerous social, cultural, educational organization/movement that works for both the mainstream community and the new immigrants in North America.