MONROVIA, Liberia, 11 January 2010 – As Liberia slowly recovers from a 14-year-long civil war, its educational system retains some of the lawlessness that reigned during the conflict.
HUYE, Rwanda, 07 January 2010 - Aphrodite, 14, and her friend Joselin used to spend their days working on a rice plantation. It was back-breaking work, toiling in the hot sun from dawn until dusk.
PERMA VILLAGE, Cameroon, 17 November 2009 – Hawa Mahmadou, 12, was devastated when she was forced to drop out of school two years ago because her parents couldn’t afford the fees. She spent her days doing household chores.
LONG LUTENG, Malaysia – Meriam Anyie was born deep in the rainforest of Malaysian Borneo. As members of the Penan ethnic group, a nomadic indigenous people in the state of Sarawak, she and her family spent most of their life in the jungle, never living in a permanent home throughout her childhood.
LAO CAI, Viet Nam, 23 July 2009 – Against the dramatic backdrop of the foothills of northern Viet Nam, students at the Kim Dong Lower Secondary gather for their morning exercises. In perfectly straight lines, and with impeccable timing, they go through their routine, which heralds the start of the school day.
The sound of a lathe screams in the background as Nael Hasan al-Lada’, 12, talks about his job in an auto body shop. He just started the job this summer, but already the young boy is helping to support his entire family of seven brothers and sisters.
DAMASCUS, Syrian Arab Republic, 16 June 2009 – Miriam, 11, is from Baghdad. She has been attending Jerji Toma School since 2008. This year she witnessed a transformation. When she first arrived, she remembers paint cracking off the walls and old school books.
GAZA, Occupied Palestinian Territory, 25 June 2009 – Brightly coloured cones, triangles and measuring tools were scattered across the school desks in the sparsely furnished fifth-grade classroom of the Mustafa Hafez primary school in Gaza City.
NEW YORK, USA, 17 July 2009 – Article 30 of the Convention of the Rights of the Child provides specific protection for children from ethnic, linguistic and religious minorities. But today, twenty years after the adoption of this international treaty, children from marginalized communities and indigenous groups continue to face extraordinary barriers.
XIHE, China, 11 May 2009 – Well before dawn, sixth-grader Yang Mei, along with her younger brother Yang Zhen and sister Yang Yamei, leave their home in rural Gansu province for school.