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In partnership with the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) Terre des Hommes is working in Cox’s Bazar to enhance the safety and dignity of Rohingya children and families and host communities.
Our emergency response consists of providing protection services to children in order to reduce their vulnerabilities and improve their wellbeing. Our activities include psychosocial support and case management.
On health, Terre des Hommes focuses on infants, children, adolescents and mothers. We provide an Essential Package of Health Services, including services for newborn care, management of childhood illness and non-communicable diseases, and mental health services.
And to ensure the effectiveness of health and protection service delivery, Tdh will maintain and improve the waste management system in the area.
Education is crucial in a country with so much poverty. It offers children who must work the chance for a better life. That is why our main focus is getting children to school.
About 7.2 million children work in Bangladesh, notably in Dhaka and Chittagong. They are no older than 14. Almost one in six does dangerous work, which the government does not regulate. This so-called informal economy includes collecting waste, working in car factories and chemical workshops, hauling work in the harbour and serving as driver’s assistants.
We provide children the chance to learn professional skills. And we make sure that as many unemployed children as possible finish school. They have a right to.
We also work with companies to improve safety and education of children who do work there. In hopes that fewer children are exploited, our campaigns publicise the disadvantages of child labour.
An estimated 30,000 girls are sexually exploited in Bangladesh. Many work in brothels. The rest work out of parking lots, bus stations and parks as well as online. Bangladesh has 18 official red light districts. The children who grow up there know no better. Many boys become pimps. Girls follow their mothers to become sex workers, often before age 12.
Terre des Hommes provides victims of sexual exploitation medical care and legal support. We help children finish their education, so they learn a professional skill and get the chance to find other work.
In Bangladesh, searches for sex with girls occur online, too. Collaborating with internet and telephone companies, we work towards better protection from online exploitation.
We educate communities and help institutions better attend to children. We encourage governments to comply better with laws. Stop child exploitation in Bangladesh. Join our fight.
Children in Bangladesh who roam the streets or are fleeing face great risk. They are often picked up by traffickers and sold. They do heavy, unhealthy and dangerous work – unpaid.
We provide these children a safe place. We carry out a lot of actions, calling their situation to the attention of police, lawyers and judges so they better protect children.
We also have extensive contact with national government and other agencies. We urge them to modify their policies, pass laws against human trafficking and, specifically, child trafficking.
Talking about sex and sexuality is a major taboo in Bangladesh. This makes it hard to tackle various problems. People think that sexual frankness leads to more premarital sex. Early pregnancies, child marriages and medical and psychological problems related to sexual abuse are poorly handled. Almost no services exist to help victims.
We empower child brides, children born in brothels and girls from the poorest groups of the population, the Dalit caste. We encourage them to stand up for themselves. We provide sexual and reproductive healthcare and remind them of their right to experience sexuality healthily and safely. For example, we urge them to decide for themselves if and when they want children.
We are also working to change mentalities. We do this through awareness-raising that is culturally appropriate yet aims to end child marriages, abuse and forced pregnancies.
When it comes to sexuality, everyone has the right to make their own decisions. Join our fight. Stop the sexual exploitation of children in Bangladesh.
Together with experienced partners we are working towards a world without child exploitation, where young people can feel safe today and better about tomorrow. Join our fight.
Mahmudul Kabir is the Country Manager for Terre des Hommes Netherlands in Bangladesh. He has dedicated 40 years of his life to providing support to people in his country, especially children. Kabir is leading his team in implementing projects and programmes that benefit the most vulnerable children and those who are exploited.