DHUVAAFARU, Maldives, 28 December 2009 – Approaching Dhuvaafaru by boat, you soon notice it is unlike many of the other atolls and islands which form the Maldives. All of the houses are new and organized into neat rows. Mounds of golden sand on the shoreline and the sounds of construction are omnipresent as workers build up the island’s defences against rising sea levels.
Post-tsunami improvements in Indonesia
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia, December 2009 – The distinctive voices of Misrina and Bunga can be heard singing above the din of other young children at the Psyandu Plus Centre. Now approaching their fifth birthdays, both were born within a few weeks of the tsunami. Misrina was delivered by a Russian doctor in a hospital tent.
NGAPUTAW TOWNSHIP, Myanmar, 21 December 2009 – In spite of the battle for life and livelihood since the tsunami hit in 2004, daily life continues in remote Phone Daw Pyae in Ngaputaw Township.
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia, 28 December 2009 – In the playing fields at the Darusada Children’s Centre, a sense of calm provides a stark contrast to what these children have endured. All the residents here have suffered from the recent conflict in Aceh, the trauma of the tsunami or have been rescued from family violence.
Healing and support
KRABI PROVINCE, THAILAND, 22 December 2009 – Sitting on the floor of her simple home, Nok (not her real name), 17, speaks with Tuangporn Dumrith, a visiting social worker. Her youth belies the trauma she has already endured in her life.
KRABI PROVINCE, Thailand, 29 December 2009 – At the Baan Klonggum School in Thailand’s Krabi province, hygiene is no less important than lessons or games. Students scrub and shine the floors of the latrine block – their work overseen by parents recruited into the effort to create a cleaner, safer school environment.
MEEDHOO, Raa Atoll, Maldives, 22 December 2009 - The session is interactive, spontaneous and fun. Led by a teacher who turns the pages on a book to reveal different animals, the children eagerly raise their hands wanting to mimic the sound each makes. This pre-school has, like so many other schools here, undergone a child-friendly transformation since the tsunami five years ago.
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia, 22 December 2009 – In the playground of the Muhamadiyah Elementary School a peaceful game of rounders is underway. But five years ago, this area was not so serene, as the devastating tsunami claimed the lives of nearly 300 pupils who were enrolled in this school at the time.
THIRAIMADU, Sri Lanka, 30 December 2009 – Dressed in homemade costumes to represent the different wild animals native to Sri Lanka, the children of Navalady Namahal Vidyalaya High School make a colourful and lively spectacle as they run through the final dress rehearsal of a play in the main hall. A crow, a deer and even a tortoise will all have a role to play in the performance.
RAA ATOLL, Maldives, 29 December 2009 – Ahmed Hussain has a tough job. As a social worker in the closely-knit communities of the atoll islands that make up the Maldives, issues like child neglect or abuse rarely surface in conversation, especially with outsiders.
AMANTHANAVELY, Sri Lanka, 23 December 2009 – Taking shade from the fierce Indian Ocean sun, a crowd waited patiently for the UNICEF-built Amanthanavely Government Health Centre to open. Inside, midwives distributed nutritional aid to mothers of underweight children.
PHANG NGA PROVINCE, Thailand, 23 December 2009 – In a remote corner of Phang Nga Province, nine-year-old Pimolpan and her aunt, Sanit Boontam, talk quietly on the porch of their small house. However, it was not always this way.
KARAKITIVU, Sri Lanka, 22 December 2009 – Jayawathi’s husband had just returned from his overnight fishing trip, and she was watching him prepare the catch in the front yard of their home in Karaitivu, on Sri Lanka’s east coast. Transferring the overflowing buckets of small silvery fish to a larger tub for salting, it looked like a good catch, but earning enough money from fishing is difficult here.