Thirteen-year-old Rakib, from Bangladesh, has only his mother to care for him and his two younger siblings. The family have struggled to get by since Rakib’s father abandoned them.
As the eldest sibling, Rakib was forced into dangerous child labour to make ends meet. He worked in a garment factory, earning as little as 1,500 BDT a month (just 50 pence a day) to support his family. The conditions Rakib worked in meant he suffered from ill health and exhaustion. A factory like this is no place for a child.
Rakib recalls: “When I was employed in the factory, I had to work from morning to night. Sometimes I had to work the whole night but they paid only 1,500 BDT per month as a salary. I did not have any leisure time because I had to work 30 days a month. I used to cut the threads off cloth. Because of the long hours of working, I suffered from headaches, fever and catarrh.”
Providing hope through education and business
Rakib and his mother were helped out of their desperate circumstances through Islamic Relief’s Elimination of Hazardous Child Labour (EHCL) programme.
We ensured that Rakib is no longer forced to work in a dangerous factory; instead he is in school getting an education
We didn’t stop there. An important element of this project is that Rakib’s mother was provided with a loan (Qard al Hasan*) to start her own business. She used the money, to rent a shop and buy a sewing machine. She now sells the clothes she makes, as well as delivering sewing classes, to bring in extra income.
As well as a loan, we provided her with the training she needed to help her grow her new business. Alhamdulillah, because his mother is now earning a stable income and even looking into expanding her business, Rakib won’t have to return to working in the factory
A bright future ahead
Your donations to our children’s fund will help to support children like Rakib through various innovative programmes like our Elimination of Hazardous Child Labour. The EHCL programme specifically targets children engaged in dangerous child labour, getting them back into education whilst also providing guardians with the skills and resources needed to create a sustainable source of income.
Islamic Relief has already worked with many families, helping them to develop and grow their businesses, while ensuring education for their children and food on the table each day.
With your generosity, we can bring even more children out of dangerous child labour and ensure they have a chance brighter future.
Qard al Hasan (a virtuous loan) – a loan that is interest-free and extended on a goodwill basis, mainly for welfare purposes. The borrower is only required to pay back the amount loaned. Islam allows loans as a form of social service among the wealthy to help the poor and those who are in need of financial assistance.