marzo 17, 2017
“I woke to screams and saw flames very nearby. My wife and I grabbed our son and left the house as quickly as we could. We couldn’t take anything else with us, we have lost everything.”
This is the story of Wahid-uz-zaman, who lives in the Korail settlement on the outskirts of Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, devastated last March by a fire which took neighbours by surprise as they slept and left more than 4534 families injured and homeless.
The fire swept through the Korail settlement at the speed of a forest fire, due to the fact that the houses are made of bamboo, tin and wood. The fire appears to have begun at approximately 2am, when most inhabitants were asleep, and local volunteers and firefighters worked to put it out until 7am, when it was finally under control.
Educo has three schools in Korail, providing for 828 students. In total, 190 of these families have been affected by the fire and they have been left with nothing. And it hasn’t just affected children, seven of our teachers also live in Korail, who, like Wahid-uz-zaman, were also Educo students.
Although the Educo schools themselves have not been affected by the fire, students saw how their uniforms, school bags and other school supplies were turned to ash.
As well as renewing these supplies, the Educo team has distributed emergency supplies to the 190 families of the students: mosquito nets, sheets, mattresses, blankets, pans and other cooking utensils, plates, glasses and cups, rice, lentils, oil and salt, clothes for children and adults, soap and detergent.
The majority of the inhabitants in this neighbourhood are originally from rural areas and came to Dhaka looking for a better life, but, once they got there, they discovered that the city is not able to absorb its ever-increasing population. This urban saturation causes people to concentrate in precarious settlements where education, employment, social protection, health and security remain out of reach for millions of people.