The 900 working children we work with in Bangladesh have recently enjoyed their annual Sports Day and picnic, organised by our partner organisations MUKTI.
Every child who attends the Community Schools supported by Children on the Edge in the area was invited along for a day of races, games, food and prizes.
Awards were given to total of 223 children to recognise many different achievements ranging from best student, to best school results and 100% attendance of the class in a year.
Project worker Mamum Rashid describes the event: “The best thing about the day was that it’s a big gathering for all the children, so they are introducing each other, making friends and enjoying their freedom on the day. They are also learning sporting discipline and those who win prizes are really inspired.”
The children who attend the Community Schools are all from different slums throughout Cox’s Bazar and the low income of their families mean that they need to contribute earnings just so their households can survive. These families cannot afford to lose this income, so education is out of the question. The Community schools provide free education for a few hours each day, enabling the children to continue their roles with their families and not miss out on their learning. The schools also focus on giving them time to just be children, free from the ‘adult’ responsibilities of earning and working. They play with their friends, freshen up and enjoy a snack each day.
Mamun goes on to say “It was a completely different emotion at the picnic session. Everyone is equal, there was lots of smiling and joy, which is something, in their lives they often miss out on”.
Find out more about the project.
Donate to the work in Bangladesh.
Read our other news stories related to this project.
A few weeks ago we reported that thanks to your generous contributions over Christmas we were able to provided essential winter supplies for Syrian refugee children, suffering freezing weather conditions in Lebanese camps.
Prior to this the children were running around in the snow wearing just flip flops. Recent reports and photos (more below) from our partners show the children being given the boots (all funded by one very kind donor!) as well as warm jackets, mattresses and blankets.
Children on the Edge is not primarily a disaster response organisation, we focus more on longer term re-building, restoration and development, but in the places we work there are often times when we need to provide some practical resources at short notice, and we’re really grateful that our supporters rally so readily at such times.
Until next Winter, in addition to the running of the current two camp schools for these refugee children we will be working on securing funding for the establishment of three further, much needed schools. Project leader Nuna has already found a possible place for the third school and will be coordinating with UNHCR and other NGOs to make sure this is the best place to focus. She networks with these organisations on a regular basis in order to ensure the work is always directed where the need is greatest.
Once up and running each school costs between £20-25,000 per year to run. If you would like to donate then please find out more. As your response over Christmas illustrated, a little generosity can make a huge difference.
“When I was a boy, I read a lot of fantasy books, and it was all about adventures and quests, it just seemed so exciting. I guess that never grew out of me and I wanted my own adventure”.
This is the opening statement for Alan’s description of why he would even consider rowing solo across the Atlantic. Now after 55 days at sea, Alan has made it across, smashing his target time of 90 days and rowing 3000 miles. Furthermore he is using his adventure to raise money for Children on the Edge.
Alan described his daily routine as “Wake up, breakfast, prepare hydration and food for the day, row/eat, hygiene, relax, sleep, repeat.” He regularly wrote about the trip from the middle of the ocean, describing the challenges he experienced. These ranged from overnight drifting, powerful waves, swells and winds, sea sickness, cravings, equipment failure, calloused hands, sleepless nights, sores and burnt lips. Overcoming all of these obstacles is described day by day in his blog, and we’d recommend it as an interesting read!
It wasn’t all bad, Alan also writes about his observations at sea. He was able so see many and various birds, fish of different shapes and colours including sharks, whales and flying fish. He describes how “Watching them [flying fish] fly into a wave was a little amusing. Magic, they just disappeared, like the train platform in Harry Potter. He also enjoyed clear skies to view the stars and continually talked about ‘next time I do this I will…’ which indicates an unbroken spirit!
We’re hugely grateful to Alan for choosing to support us through this superhuman challenge and looking forward to catching up with him when he’s fully rested. Watch this space for an interview with the man himself.
Donate on Alan’s Just Giving page
Read about the adventure on his blog