A few kids at a Kolkata slum were perturbed over how some adults were not taking the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic seriously enough. Aged between 14 and 17 years, they came up with a series of posters to communicate the importance of hand hygiene and social distancing. Here are the lessons from the young ones.
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the entire world to its knees — it is hand hygiene, isolation and social distancing that is keeping them safe and going. However, millions of people living in urban slums in India do not have the luxury to practice physical distancing. Neither can they afford to stay at home, as a major chunk survives on daily wages. Poster: Sariya Reaz
But there is a bigger worry — many do not understand the gravity of the pandemic that stares at us. It makes them — and those around them — highly vulnerable. Poster: Md Afridi
A few days ago, CRY volunteers working in the urban slums of Narkeldanga reached out to children they work with, over phone. While the weekly sessions are usually focused on studies, art and craft, creative pursuit and overall development, this time it was to gauge how they were reacting to the pandemic. Poster: Aishiki Roy
The crisis heavily influenced children, according to the volunteers. Their shaky economic background has left them with little choice to cope with the pandemic. They belong to the families of wage workers, labourers and small shop owners, and are staring at uncertain times ahead. Poster: Ayesha Siddiqui
However, the children said there were other things more frustrating than being unable to go out — the unresponsible behaviour of adults. Poster: Asif Hossain
“People don’t listen to us. Therefore, we decided to make them see. Through these posters, we wanted to show what we can do for a better, safer, healthier and more responsible country,” said a 14-year-old child. Poster: Mridula Ghosh
Most children were disturbed that despite repeated warnings, many could be seen roaming in the streets like ‘nothing had happened’. “If we children can understand how deadly this virus is, why can’t they?” the child asked. Poster: Shadman Shahar
A 15-year-old girl said: “We live in the slums of Rajabazar and do not have the space needed for physical distancing. Our community has a couple of common toilets to share. It is difficult for us, but we are doing all we can.” Poster: Samreen Parveen
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