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A Slum Kid is Struggling for Her Dream

An 11-year-old innocent and intelligent girl Shilpi Akter attends class IV at Chalantika Slum Children Development Project (CSCDP) which is operated by ADRA in Bangladesh. She lives with her parents at Chalantika Slum in Dhaka.

Not only in Bangladesh but in all the under-develop countries the scenario of the slum area is almost the same. Life is full of struggle in the slum. Especially children are mostly deprived of their basic education. They have to fight against the gruesome vulnerabilities constantly.

Shilpi’s father's name is Md. Afzal Howlader and mother's name is Taslima begum. They came from the Barishal district which is located in the southern part of Bangladesh. They lost everything due to river erosion. They had nothing left for living. They decided to move to Dhaka for better living. Shilpi’s parents tried hard to get a job but failed. They had compelled to choose to beg as their profession to survive in the overcrowded metropolis.

Shilpi along with her parents are living in a slum that lacks all the basic amenities. Their house made of bamboo with a CL sheet roof. The rooms are very tiny in the slum. They can’t get the water for drinking properly which disrupts their daily life. They have to share their toilet with other eight families. They are suffering a lot due to the lack of a garbage management system. People throw garbage everywhere in the Chalantika slum which causes odor. This is the real scenario of the Chalantika slum in Dhaka.

As her parents are beggars, they don’t have any extra income. So, their family is struggling to manage their living and surviving with a little amount of food by begging from others. It’s very difficult for her parents to afford the educational expenses. But Shilpi wants to continue her studies.

Since Shilpi’s parents are unable to afford the educational expenses, they’ve admitted her into the CSCDP center. Her favorite subject is English. She goes to the center regularly where she learns her lessons.

“I’m getting books, pencils, notebooks, school bags, and school dress from CSCDP center for free. I’m also getting foods from here. I’ve learned about health & hygiene for daily life. I love CSCDP center a lot,” Shilpi showed her compassion about CSCDP center.

Shilpi learns a lot of good things from the CSCDP center. She learns how to clean hands properly, health & hygiene for daily life, respecting the elders, etc. After school, she studies by herself and plays with her friends. She also helps her mother in household works like cooking, collecting water, and cleaning.

“I want to be a doctor in my life. I want to help poor people who can’t afford treatment. I also want to live in a better place than the slum. I want to earn a good sum of money to support my family financially so I can stop my parents begging and live happily,” Shilpi was unfolding her dreams confidently.

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