Dhaka, a city with 15 million, receives over 500,000 newcomers each year. Many come with the notion this “move” is temporary or that they will be able to ascend the socioeconomic ladder; however, temporary becomes 10 years and betterment often remains distant. Forty percent of the population in Dhaka will find themselves settling into slums or homeless. While expanding geographically and economically, Dhaka remains poor in infrastructure, equity, and equality.
These individuals comprise the workforce fueling the city’s advancement, though their conditions remain poor and they remain disenfranchised. Sustaining life day-to-day, they live and work in environments, which expose them to adverse health risks, and they disproportionately carry higher disease burdens. Urgency remains to providing opportunities to better their conditions and provide them with basic rights.
These photos provide glimpses into the lives of the urban poor. They demonstrate the strength of human perseverance, durability, and human will to continue to pursue life despite strenuous conditions, and yet in a state of peril, these characteristics provide hope that change can and will happen.
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