"Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."

Nelson Mandela

Help us During Ramadan

Help us During Ramadan

The global pandemic has made life difficult for most but the worst hit are those living in squalid conditions in slums in developing countries. Our partners in Bangladesh are working hard to get food packages to daily wage earners whose livelihoods have suddenly stopped.

This year your donations will help save lives.

Please consider us when donating Sadaqah or your Zakat.

Our Mission

Posted by: on Mar 18, 2019 | No Comments

Covid 19 – The reality in one of the World’s most densely populated countries

Posted by: on May 12, 2020 | No Comments

Social distancing, and lock down simply does not work for the millions living in counties like Bangladesh. Bangladesh is one of the most densely populated large country in the world. It does not have the capacity or infrastructure to carry out mass testing or a sufficient healthcare system to look after those infected.

A blind mother begs holding her baby

Current statistics show that there have been 239 Covid 19 related deaths in Bangladesh, but without any sort of proper testing, this is not a true figure. There are few tests so many deaths due to the disease will go unrecorded. There are also no records of deaths at all, so it is impossible to compare the number of deaths this time last year to this year so there is no way of measuring the impact of the pandemic.

Living in close proximity in a slum

Most Bangladeshis live in close proximity to each other. Families are large in number and live in small and cramped tenements, with several families sharing a single tap and toilet. It is impossible for them to social distance and therefore the spread of Coronavirus is likely to be rapid. With no testing for the disease however, there is little way of knowing how widespread the infection is becoming.

Queuing for the communal tap

The Government has imposed a lock down which is difficult for most but impossible for many. What of the hundreds of thousands who live on the streets in tents and under bits of tarpaulin? How do they lock themselves away?

Whilst locked away, just like the rest of the world, many people are unable to work. Vast numbers of workers earn a daily wage with no promise of regular work or income. If they cannot work on a particular day or are prevented from working, their income stops immediately. These people are now in dire need with no income and so no means of support.

Jaago foundation delivering food to daily wage earners suddenly left without an income

The Orphan Trust is helping these families alongside organisations such as the Jaago Foundation, by providing hot food and food parcels to those left without any way to pay for food.

The homeless though have nowhere to go. There is no government initiative to aid the homeless in Bangladesh. They are forced to sit on empty streets and station platform without any food.

This little girl sells stickers to earn money to eat whilst her mother labours on a building site

During this difficult time NGOs including many of our partners in Bangladesh have been providing food packages to slum areas and people in rural villages.

Delivering meals to the homeless at Sylhet train station

We have also been providing free meals to the homeless who do not have the means to cook or money to buy ingredients.

 

 

The long term impact of COVID 19 is unlikely to ever be fully unknown in Bangladesh, but given the death toll in developed nations like the UK Italy and the US,  there is no doubt it will be catastrophic. As the pandemic unfolds we need your help and support to continue supporting the most needy and vulnerable.

Please donate to help us continue to provide food for these most vulnerable people.

Play Therapy Training In Action.

Posted by: on Sep 26, 2019 | No Comments

We have had some fantastic feedback from the delegates who participated in the ‘Foundation Course in Therapeutic Play’ we ran at Dhaka University in March 2019.

Training in play therapy techniques Cox’s Bazaar

Delegates have been sharing their experiences and the techniques they learned with their organisations.

 

 

 

 

 

“Dear Orphan Trust

I am writing you to let you know about the experience sharing of our training- Foundation course in therapeutic play, which was carried out on 16th July :  9 AM-1 PM at Handicap International (HI) , Cox’s Bazar (ukhiya office). The respondents were Psycho-social Support Officer of HI. I have added some photographs of the incident in attachments. However, The training appears to have been effective for betterment of mental health in Bangladesh. We are grateful to you and Prof. Gordon for the training and would welcome such of this kind in the future. 

Kind Regards,  

K.N Khan

Psychosocial Support Officer  Handicap International (HI)”

 

With your support we hope to run more courses to train front line workers in play therapy to address the mental health needs of the underprivileged children of Bangladesh

Help us During Ramadan

Help us During Ramadan

Posted by: on May 10, 2019 | No Comments

The global pandemic has made life difficult for most but the worst hit are those living in squalid conditions in slums in developing countries. Our partners in Bangladesh are working hard to get food packages to daily wage earners whose livelihoods have suddenly stopped.

This year your donations will help save lives.

Please consider us when donating Sadaqah or your Zakat.

Street Play With Pothoshishu

Posted by: on Mar 30, 2019 | No Comments

Today I joined Pothoshishu on their street play session with the children at Sadarghat, the main ferry terminal in Dhaka.

Hazera aged 9 lives with her mother on the streets

Pothoshishu are an organisation we have been supporting since 2012 that run regular play sessions at various locations throughout Dhaka where there are big communities living on the streets including families, orphans and runaways. Once a week these children take a break from their work or begging to step onto the Pothoshishu mat and be children for a few hours. Whilst they play, draw, relax, the volunteers talk to the children find out their situation, clean their wounds, give them medication and just be with them and love them as children should be loved.

Talking to the children I found out many were born at the terminal and that’s the only home they have known. They sleep on the terminal floor and it even their parents and their parents were born there. It seems some families are trapped in the terminal and have lived there for a few generations. They’ve never known living in a proper home.

Speaking to their mothers, it seems they are resigned to the fact that they’ll be there forever, with no dreams or aspirations of ever getting a roof over heads.

Riad aged 4

The government have centres around the terminal which provide three meals a day for the children and facilities for them to wash. If they wish, they are able to help the children enrol into school. The problem is that the parents need the income from the children and are reluctant to allow them to go to school. There is no desire amongst this group to improve or to move on.

One mother became quite animated when I asked her why she didn’t allow her child to go to the centre for food or enrol him into school. She herself has been brought up on the streets. She claimed the centre was there to drug and steal children for their eyes and their kidneys. She clearly didn’t trust the Government and said “I would rather die free then be trapped in the system where my body parts will get sold off to help rich people”.

Shahejalal, an orphan aged 15

As is usual in Bangladesh, we had a crowd of people gathered around us during this conversation who all agreed with her. It is so sad how apathetic these children are and how they are resigned to their fate. Looking around at these kids some orphaned or accompanied by their parents, they are all ragged with dirty clothes, no shoes, blisters and cuts, but somehow accepting their circumstances.

What do you do when the children and their parents mistrust the system so much? They have been let down by the system and would rather live with nothing, begging, stealing and borrowing, rather than utilise the little help that is available to improve their lives.

This is something we are trying to address by supported projects such as Pothoshishu. In today’s session the children were asked to draw pictures of themselves with their best friends doing a happy activity together.

Khadija aged 8 lives with her family at the terminal

The childrens’ ages ranged from 3 to 15. Some struggled to hold a pencil properly and most struggled to even draw a circle freely. Their hand movements were rigid and concentration tense. That they couldn’t draw a circle freely, or had limited imagination was so sad. Is it an indication of missed childhood, of having to grow up fast as you can’t afford to be a true child when you are living on the street.

These children deserve so much better. Please help us to help them. You can donate here:

 

 

 

 

Habit, an orphan aged 10

Sonia, a runaway aged 15

Rihan, an orphan aged 12

Kushi aged 10

Rubel aged 6

Faisal aged 9