Diary of an Intern: Nusrat Ahmed. Princeton. New Jersey - The Art Workshop Day

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I think art is one of the most powerful forms of self-expression and rediscovery. Whether it’s painting or coloring, the colors that are chosen, the designs that are made, and the lines that are formed, they all tell a story. 
 
During my second field visit, I brought with me drawing pads, oil pastels, and paints for each of the children. The children all sat next to each other but it was quickly apparent that there was a rift between two of the women. 
By Nusrat Ahmed | 20 July 2014

Diary of an Intern: Nusrat Ahmed. Princeton. New Jersey - First Encounter

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My dad grew up in Karachi, Pakistan as a street kid. He had a mother and father but had to fend for himself. This was the situation for him, his five brothers, and his sister. 
 
He would fool around with his friends, save up a few cents to buy some candy, which he would suck on from sunrise to sunset. 
 
“We took care of each other,” he would say. 
 
By Nusrat Ahmed | 06 July 2014

Hold-up on human rights

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Bangladesh, upon the MDGs, has shown improvements in a number of areas. The 2012 report states that the country has already met some of the goals including a reduced poverty gap ratio, better gender parity at primary and secondary education and under-five mortality rate reduction. 
So despite the constant political drama, the country can celebrate on the apparent direction. However what is still alarming is how a large majority of the physically and mentally impaired children remains out of the schooling system, access to safe water is still restricted especially for the very poor and mostly, the state/number of the homeless youth.
By Nancy Kamal | 30 March 2014

What would you like to do when you grow up?

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The street children of Dhaka are surprisingly resilient and at the same time, big dreamers. There are many children that run away from home knowing that they will face hardship on the streets with only the hope that their dreams will come alive.

The Bangladesh Restless Beings team set out to ask what some of the street children of Dhaka aspire to be when they grew up; what their dreams are, who they hope to be, where they see themselves in the future if they had the choice.

By Nancy Kamal | 16 February 2014

Eid clothes in time for the 2013 Eid ul-Adha festivities!

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A few months ago Restless Beings carried out the ‘My Ramadan Resolution’ campaign to give street children Eid gifts (consisting of a meal, new clothes and educational books) at the end of the spiritual month of Ramadan.

It brings us great joy to say we were able to raise enough to buy for all those who frequently use the Centre as well as many more, which was contributed towards the extra food distribution on the day!

The Restless Beings Bangladesh team as well as the children give their heartfelt thanks to the donors and supporters of this project. 

By Nancy Kamal | 15 October 2013

Child Migration: How Can Bangladesh Learn From The Philippines?

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Ask anyone and they will tell you; when they were young, all they wanted to do was make lots of money and chase their dreams when they grew up.

Everyone then dragged their heels through school, college and university and then finally when they landed that great job, they moved out.

Some of the children now living on the streets probably had the same dream – except their reasons to flock to the city are multidimensional. And their reasons to migrate are not often because they wanted to, but rather because they were forced to.

By Nancy Kamal | 21 September 2013

Street Children: Why Bother?

The overly congested city of Dhaka, has much in its background. But amongst the congestion, commotion and pollution are the floating population.

There are over 400,000 street children in Bangladesh with over a third of them settled in Dhaka. Living in dense slums, squatter settlements or on the pavement makes them vulnerable to a dangerous concoction of dilemmas - from malnutrition to sexual abuse, force participation to petty theft to substance abuse.

By Nancy Kamal | 31 March 2013

New Year Smiles for the Restless Beings Street Kids!

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Myself and fellow restless being Foreda, whilst working on another charity project in Sylhet, managed to battle through the crazy traffic jams of Dhaka to make our way to the Restless Beings Bangladesh Rehab Centre and Home in January this year. It was the first time in our two and half years of becoming restless beings, that we were able to go see the Rehab Centre and Home and the amazing team that have been working so tirelessly to bring hope to so many forgotten and marginalised children on the streets of Dhaka.

Having lived in Bangladesh for almost two months prior to our visit, we witnessed on a daily basis the struggle that befalls those on the streets; vulnerable and desperate futures  are what lie ahead. The scenes put into context why such acts of young children abusing drugs; taking dandy to escape from the harsh and very gruesome realities of their ‘childhood,’ and relying on gangs and pimps for some sort of familial support and home are so apparent in the lives of street children.

By Nadia Hussain | 03 February 2013

Kolpona.

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When the street children of Dhaka were asked why they flock to the people who wear the "green hand" and the ones who call themselves “Wrestling Beans”, they all say the same thing – we trust them, they listen, they understand and they care.

On one such day, in early November, the team came across a teenage girl named Kolpona; her name meaning ‘fantasy’ or ‘imagination’. Tragically none of the team could imagine the challenges she has to face.

By Nancy Kamal | 29 December 2012

The calm between the storms

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In the cool month of November the Restless Beings Bangladesh team sip tea with some of the street children. Through these moments the team have come to witness how the children go about their day. Despite facing events and deprivations that no child should experience they have an acute appreciation of the simple things in life.

The team have endeavoured to capture these fleeting moments, insignificant to passers-by but monumental to their make up. 

By Nancy Kamal | 14 December 2012