SM Shaikat

2019 Winner

Position: Executive Director
Organization: SERAC-Bangladesh

LLB (Honors) from University of London, UK

Additional Degrees and Certifications:
  • -Training on Project Management, United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT), 2010.
    -Training on Organization Management, NGO Federation, Bangladesh, 2011.
    -Training on Project Management, The Union, France, 2012.
    -Advances in Strategic Communication, the Bangladesh Centre for Communication Programs under Johns Hopkins University, 2012.
    -Project Management Course by Women Deliver, 2013.
    -International Visitors Leadership Program by U.S. Department of State, 2013.
    -International Human Rights Training Program, Equitas, Canada, 2015.
    -Campaign Lab Workshop, Kathmandu, Nepal by RHRN Nepal, 2018
    -Project Planning Workshop, Singapore by Population Action International (PAI), 2019.
    -Bangladesh country moderator at 11th International Dialogue on Population and Development, 2013 in Berlin.
    -Speaker at 69th UN General Assembly side events on youth in 2014 at UNHQ.
    -Speaker at 70th UN General Assembly Youth Side event in 2015 at UNHQ.
    -Speaker at 16th General Membership Meeting of Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition, Oslo, Norway, 2015.
    -Speaker at 17th General Membership Meeting of Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition, Seattle, USA, 2016.
    -Speaker at Women Deliver Global Conference, 2016, Copenhagen, Denmark.
    -Youth Delegation Leader, 12th International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP), 2016, Dhaka.
    -Facilitator, RHSC Youth caucus meeting at International Conference on Family Planning, Indonesia, 2016.
    -Speaker, Women Deliver side event, International Conference on Family Planning, Indonesia, 2016.
    -Speaker at Youth Pre-Conference of Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD) 2017.
    -Speaker, High Level Political Forum (HLPF), UNHQ, USA, 2017.
    -Speaker at 72nd UN General Assembly special event on UN-Habitat, 2017 at UNHQ.
    -Facilitator, Value clarification on Meaning and Inclusive Youth Participation, by RHRN, 2017, Bangladesh.
    -Speaker at Youth Pre-Conference of Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD) 2018.
    -Speaker at Mid-term review of Asia-Pacific Population Conference 2018.
    -Speaker at Girls Not Brides Global Meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 2018.
    -Speaker at Opening Ceremony of World Urban Forum 2018, Malaysia.
    -Facilitator, youth pre-conference at International Conference on Family Planning, Kigali, Rwanda, 2018.
    -Speaker at PMNCH Partners Forum 2018, New Delhi, India.
    -Speaker at SheDecides Flagship event in Nepal, 2019.
    -Elevator speech winner at WHO Youth town hall in Jakarta, Indonesia, 2019.
    -Speaker at Women Deliver Global Conference 2019, Vancouver, Canada.
    -Founding Chair-RHSC Youth Caucus, 2015-2016.
    -Elected Youth Advisor (Asia-Pacific), UN-Habitat Youth Advisory Board, 2015.
    -Member- National Family Planning Technical Forum, Bangladesh.
    -Organizer, World Humanitarian Summit 2016, Turkey.
    -Secretary General, Bangladesh Youth Summit on Universal Health Coverage, 2016.
    -Governing body member, Right Here Right Now Bangladesh Platform, 2017.
    -Global Organizing Committee member, PMNCH Partners Forum 2018.
    -Founder and Secretary General, Bangladesh National Youth Conference on Family Planning (BNYCFP).
    -Founder, Bangladesh Youth Health Action Network (BYHAN).
    -Executive Committee Member, Commonwealth Youth Gender Equality Network, 2016-2018
    Awards Received:
    • Award:
      Postpartum Family Planning Innovation Champion
      Awarding Organization:
      Date Awarded:
      November 13, 2017
    • Award:
      Women Deliver Young Leader
      Awarding Organization:
      Women Deliver
      Date Awarded:
      May 25, 2013
    • Award:
      Light of Justice Award
      Awarding Organization:
      Nyar Alo Social Organization, Bangladesh
      Date Awarded:
      March 26, 2014

“SM Shaikat is the Executive Director of SERAC-Bangladesh, which implemented 6 family planning projects in 10 years, while running 2 others to ensure youth friendly SRHR services at 400 clinics & to increase Health Corners’ service hours in Bangladesh.”


Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I lead SERAC-Bangladesh, a youth organization advocating and implementing programs on family planning, and health rights for youth, and gender based violence prevention in Bangladesh. I worked with Women Deliver as a Young Leader, Bangladesh founding Country Coordinator for IYAFP, founding Chair of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition youth caucus, and a Global Organizing Committee member of the PMNCH Partners Forum. I initiated the Bangladesh National Youth Conference on Family Planning in 2016, and continued in 2017, 2018, and 2019, which is first of its kind in the world. Three of my running projects are advocating to increase FP service hours and including youth friendly SRH services at 400 government clinics, and we got 23 MPs endorsed on Dhaka Youth Call to Action on FP & SRH.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

Bangladesh has the highest adolescent fertility rate in South Asia where 1 girl in 10 bear a child before the age of 15 (UNDP, 2016) and 51.2% of adolescent girls access contraceptive method among them 46.7% use modern contraceptive method (BDHS, 2014). But SRHR issues in Bangladesh remain difficult to discuss openly, particularly among young people with limited or no choice. There was no youth led space to voice these issues, what dragged me to innovate advocacy programs on FP and youth.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

I always try finding sustainable and innovative solutions to long-standing issues. Likewise I found a youth led sustainable advocacy platform for FP and SRHR was in high demand of youths in Bangladesh. Then I ignited the world’s first ever National Youth Conference on Family Planning in 2016, and 2017, 2018 & this year, this annual conference is bringing together thousands of young people, stakeholders, high level policy makers on the same floor to discuss, demand and trigger progress on FP.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? 

SERAC-Bangladesh has launched the ‘National Youth SRH Champions fellowship’ in 2019, which will recognize and build capacity of 20 outstanding youth advocates annually in Bangladesh. I will link up this with 120Under40 to enrich this national fellowship program. Also with the grant award I will organize a capacity building workshop for 350 youth delegates at the next National Youth Conference on Family Planning and publish a ‘FP Guide for YOUth’ booklet to empower & equip youth FP advocates.

Video Introduction:

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work: