A Family Saved in the City Slums | Children in the Cities Impact Stories

In the slum of Maniknagar, Johura, a 36-year-old mother stays with her family of five in a very congested room. Her husband is working as a bus helper in Dhaka city. His monthly income was insufficient to bear the family expenditure. Hence, Johura started working as a maidservant to support him. 

Johura and her husband’s earnings are sufficient to just meet the basic expenditures of the family. Providing nutritious meals, and educational materials such as books, pencils, and uniforms for their children became a luxury for the family.

“My family’s economic condition was in a very bad state. I could not manage money for my child's education,” says Johura. 

Only after six months of schooling, her 8-year-old son Ibrahim had to drop out of school even though he desired to continue. With no other choice, Johura had to send him to work. Every morning she cooked pulse and potato curry which Ibrahim would sell in the slum. His everyday wages were 100 – 150 taka (S$1.50 – S$2.30).

With the little she could save, Johura also bought some clothes to sell. Due to low investment, she was not able to see much profit. When the family was grasping at straws to keep going, World Vision’s interventions shined hope in their lives. Johura was supported to make her business flourish. 

Ibrahim was chosen as a beneficiary and was enrolled in non-formal education where he learned to read and write. Johura also benefitted from Income Generation Activities. She was trained in financial literacy and provided with saris to sell. When she managed to sell all of them in the community, she was able to purchase more with the profits earned. She started saving Tk 1000 (S$15) monthly and obtained a contract with wholesale sari sellers. 

Her small business is slowly but surely thriving. She is now able fully financially support her family and keep Ibrahim in school. As a mother, Johura’s heart is full as she can fill her children’s hunger with nutritious food. 

“I’m really thankful for all that World Vision has done for me and my family. It has changed our lives,” says Johura with a wide smile. 

Parents like Johura in urban poor communities in the cities Maniknagar and Dhalpur are supported to better provide for their families. From pulling rickshaws, selling vegetables or clothes to tailoring, they are empowered to pursue their small businesses and to live in dignity.


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Written By: 
World Vision Singapore