Blog - Category Archives: NGO

Video: Don’t call me a woman

Sandhiya from Madurai (Tamil Nadu, India) has the body of a woman but feels like a man. She wants to be called Raja only. Raja has been receiving threats for years but when they became life threatening, Raja and his mother had to quickly move to a temporary home in Chennai.

Copyright Frank Röhrig

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Video: Homeless in Dehradun

VIDEO: The Aasraa Trust tries to get children off the street and into education.

Copyright Frank Röhrig

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Homeless in Dehradun

Street children in Dehradun, India

Dehradun (India) has a vast population of children that its fast economic development has left behind. Without home, education and care, these children roam the streets in search of garbage and handouts. Many children are forced to beg by their own families, themselves without income or home. Because children with disabilities have more begging potential, parents sometimes mutilate their own children. Other children simply abandon their home due to violence and drug abuse by their parents.

The problem is set to worsen in a growing population and a rapidly widening wealth gap between the rich and the poor.

Self-help groups and NGOs, such as the Aasraa Trust by Shaila Brijnath, try to provide a measure of care and education with limited funds and often using personal savings, to help children build a future that is worth living. Their efforts a routinely sabotaged by begging children’s parents who depend on their income. Without an education that is enabling children to enter the job market, it seems impossible to break this spiral.

Check the portfolio section for a smaller photo selection and a video…

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Cape Town Streetkids

Cape Town StreetkidsCape Town has many children who roam the streets to beg for food. Broken-down families and repeated abuse by their parents drive them out of their homes to search for a better life in the streets. Growing up in the streets, many children become early drug addicts and develop destructive behavioral patterns such as aggression. NGOs scramble to provide a level of care to such run-aways by providing food and shelter. Other efforts are directed at counseling those families at risk to prevent children abandoning their families. Such efforts are unlikely to stem the flow of street children unless some of the root causes of family breakdown, such as widespread alcoholism in the vast poverty-stricken townships like Kayelitsha, can be resolved.

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Uganda – Massaka Hair Salon

Massaka Hair SalonThe high mortality rate of HIV positive people rips through the Ugandan society, leaving many children orphaned. Without the support of their immediate family, children are often left to fend for themselves. There are NGO initiatives underway to alleviate this problem. One such initiative arranges vocational training for orphans to help them learn a profession and eventually earn their own living. The hair salon in this essay trains two orphans supported by the NGO Uweso. This photo essay covers a normal working day from morning until evening for one of the trainees. Her name is Hilda and she is 16 years old.

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