Brothers in pursuit of a better education

Akbar and Rehan are brothers, children of Sarip and Jariah who have 5 children ranging from 2 to 20 years of age.  Rehan is the second child who is in Grade 7 and Akbar is the third child in Grade 3.

They both go to schools just across from the community.  Most of the children of trash pickers under the care of XSProject go to these schoolsbecause they are close to home. But the school is not close for Rehan and Akbar.

About 4 years ago, Rehan’s father had an accident and injured his leg. He became less productive colleting trash and as a result no overseer wants to employ him.  Hehad to move out and find his own place to live, along with his family. It is not easy for a trash picker to work on his own, because they are normally dependent on their boss for a place to live.

The family eventually found a place to stay but it is far away from their children’s school. Fortunately the distance doesn’t discourage the brothers.

Everyday, they wake very early in the morning to walk about 2.5 km to the main road before travelling on a crowded bus to school. Amazingly, they always arrive to class on time. They repeat the same routine again going home. From Monday to Saturday for Raihan who is in Middle School.

For Akbar, since the community provides a tutorial to help primary students with their homework, he will stop first at the tutor and return home later in the afternoon. That is the only opportunity for him to finish his study, because there is no possibility to study at home after a long dayor on the road going back and forth to school.

However, the boys are enthusiastic and never complain about the long journey from their home to school.  Even though they have a difficult time travelling each day, their grades are always good.  Their difficulties getting to school give them the drive to achieve good grades. 

Rehan and Akbar’s father is a trash picker, and their mother takes care of the chidren and helps sort and clean the trash her husband collects. The family survives day to day, and they must work extra to earn enough money to give Rehan and Akbar transportation money and to buy a snack or meal at school. Most of the time, Rehan and Akbar’s mom will prepare breakfast or a little food to bring to school, to save meal money. 

A donation for transportation would help relieve some of the burden for Akbar and Rehan’s parents.  And it would ensure that the boys continue to keep up their studies and succeed. They know that an education is their best chance for a better life.

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