Noor Alam is a 5 year old boy. He attends our Shapla pre-primary school in East Primolla.
He lives with his family in a rented house in the Khasdobir area of Sylhet. His father is a cleaner in the supermarket and his mother does housework for people living nearby. Noor has one brother who attends a local primary school.
The family moved to Sylhet from Dhaka one and a half years ago. Noor’s mother is from a village outside Dhaka. His father is from a village from the Sunamganj District of Sylhet. His mother and father met in Dhaka where they had both moved to work. Noor’s mother used to work in the garment industry in Dhaka. They found it cost a lot to live in Dhaka and therefore decided to move to Sylhet City.
Noor loves books and his mother hopes that after pre-school he will continue his education in Sylhet.
Asha is a 4 year old girl. She attends our Bokul pre-school in Badambagicha. She has two older brothers aged 11 and 17. One attends primary school and one is now a college student.
Asha’s father is a tiler and her mother does house work. Her parents were married in Badambagicha and her mother moved there from the nearby tea estate. Her grandparents worked on the tea estate and her mother went to primary school on the tea estate. Aisha’s mother’s education ended before she reached 11 years old. She hopes her children will have a better education.
Jantuli is 4 years old. She attends our Bokul pre-school at Badambagicha. She has one brother and 3 sisters. One sister died when she was 15 years old. Her two older sisters are at school but her 11 year old brother is no longer at school. He left one year ago and is now not doing anything. The family cannot afford to send him to school.
Jantuli’s father sells vegetables in the market and her mother is a housewife. They live in a room in one of the local “colonies”. (Slum areas adjacent to better housing. Several families live in each colony, many were originally from outside Sylhet and came to the city in search of work). 16 families live in their colony. Jantuli’s mother has lived in the colony all her life. She had to stop schooling before completing primary school. She hopes her daughter will continue her education and find a good job.
Janata is a 4 year old girl. She attends our Shiuli primary school in Badambagicha. She has one brother who is 10 years old and attends a local primary school. He did not have the opportunity to attend pre-school.
Janata lives with her family in a local “colony”. (Slum areas adjacent to better housing. Several families live in each colony, many were originally from outside Sylhet and came to the city in search of work). 9 families live in their colony. Janata’s family have lived there for 7 years and before that lived in a different colony in Badambagicha.
Janata’s mother was born in Badambagicha but her family were originally from a different part of Bangladesh. All of Janata’s mother’s brothers and sisters live in the same colony. Some are attending school and others are working in a shop.
Turjo Debnath is three and a half years old. He attends our pre-school on the Hilwachara tea garden near Sylhet. He is the only son of Nipa, who has been married for 5 years.
Before her marriage Nipa lived with her family in a different part of Sylhet. Her father ran a clothes shop. He died 4 years ago. Nipa studied to secondary level. She is now a housewife.
Turjo’s father works on the tea estate and earns just over £1 per day.
The family share a house with Turjo’s father’s family. Turjo’s brothers and sisters live there. Several of them also work in the tea garden and one is in full time education.
Nipa hopes her son will find a good job. Before our school opened Turjo did not attend school. Before starting school Turjo was afraid but he now has lots of friends at school and enjoys attending.
Friends of Khasdobir, Bangladesh