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at16

At 16 Munni is a remarkable young woman.  She lives with her family within one of India’s most marginalised communities, known as ‘Musahar’.  When she turned 13, Munni’s father and grandfather arranged for her to be married to secure her financial future.   However, Munni’s mother had other plans.  She knew that receiving an education was important for her daughter.  With the support of community workers supported by Save the Children, Munni was saved from a childhood marriage.

at16 01Munni with some of the women she teaches.
Photo credit: CJ Clarke

Now aged 16, Munni dreams of being a doctor.  However, she is already proving to be an excellent teacher, after setting up a learning group for women in her neighbourhood. 

With Save the Children giving her the support she needed to get started, Munni now teaches more than twenty women, including her mother, to read, write and speak up for themselves. 

She may only be 16, but Munni is already stamping her mark on her community.

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Gerald, 13, lives in a small village in Tacloban, Philippines. When Typhoon Haiyan hit in 2013, Gerald encouraged his family to evacuate their home and go to a nearby school, where they sheltered as the typhoon destroyed the area around them. When they eventually returned home, Gerald’s family discovered their house and fishing boat had been destroyed.

Save the Children repaired classrooms at Gerald’s primary school and provided vital necessities for the family to help restore their home. Two of Gerald’s older siblings went on to attend our vocational skills development programme.

Gerald is now a member of the WASH Club (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) at his school and helps to promote hygiene in his school and community.

Age is no barrier to Gerald making his mark on the world around him.

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Gerald, aged nine, helps his father push his fishing boat out to sea.
Photo credit: Save the Children

eight year

Eight-year-old Kareem* is growing up in northern Syria. He loves going to school as it’s the only place where he can have fun, learn new things and play with his friends.

Save the Children supports the local school, providing funding for teachers, training, equipment and recreational items. We also work with communities to keep schools and students safe from the impacts of conflict. It’s not always safe for Kareem to attend school, unfortunately. His mother often makes him stay at home whenever there are aeroplanes overhead for fear that the school might be hit.

“I wish I had a shield like a turtle shell that could protect everyone. Then we would be protected from the bombs and it would be safe to go to school every day without being scared.” Kareem, 8

Kareem dreams of being a photographer when he grows up – it’s his way of making his mark on the world.

* Not his real name

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Kareem at school with his friends in a school supported by Save the Children
Photo credit: Ahmad Baroundi / Save the Children

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Sumon, 10, is in Grade 4 at Save the Children supported-KKS Primary School in Daulatdia, Bangladesh.  His mother has been a sex worker in the Daulatdia brothel for over 10 years.

It’s no ordinary place to grow up.  A filthy maze of flimsy dwellings hides a world of drugs, violence, disease and almost 2,000 unwilling sex workers.

Sumon knows that the brothel is no place for children to live.

“This is not a good place at all.  Life inside the brothel is hard to comprehend.  I love to go to school though.  The teachers care about me and help me to comprehend my study and learning.”  Sumon, 10

He’s set his heart on becoming a police officer someday, to help the people of Daulatdia and get his mother out of that ugly environment. Thanks to Save the Children, that dream could become a reality. 

Sumon dreams of the day he can make his mark on the world.

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Sumon with his friends at school.
Photo credit: Save the Children New Zealand

saung

Saung Hay is 15 years old and lives in Umphiem Camp in Mae Sot, Thailand. She is currently in grade nine.  Saung Hay loves to cook and often helps her mother at home.  She also enrolled in cooking classes so she could learn to make other food.

Saung Hay is part of the KSNG, Karen Student Network Group, which is made up of about 50 children from across the camp who organise communal events.  Saung Hay’s role is to fundraise for future events for children.  To raise funds, she cooks Pho (Noodle Soup) purchased with the treasury funds of the group and sells them at separate events.  The money raised also goes to repair buildings and for emergency relief within the community.

Saung Hay was at risk of dropping out of school, but Save the Children’s ACCESS project ensures that out-of-school refugee children attend school and succeed there.

Saung Hay is already making her mark on her local community.

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Saung Hay reads with her brother
Photo credit: Egan Hwan

 

eighteen

Eighteen-year-old Saleha, a college student, lives in the slums of Govandi in suburban Mumbai, India.  Her family have faced many financial difficulties.

As an active member of a Save the Children child’s group in her area, Saleha has been at the forefront of a unique child-led campaign called ‘WASH4LIFE’.  Members of this group advocate on water and sanitation issues in their community.

Over the last three years, Saleha has conducted more than 250 sessions on menstrual hygiene and other WASH-related issues, influencing more than 2,500 adolescent girls.  She does this through innovative and fun methods such as street plays, photo exhibitions and talk shows.

Saleha is one of Save the Children’s child champions and has been recognised internationally for her campaigning, including being nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize in 2017.

Saleha has fought hard to stamp her mark on the world.

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