One year after fleeing Myanmar, Rahama finds inspiration in Bangladesh

By: 
CARE
Rahama enjoys playing with her friends in the women-friendly space set up by CARE Bangladesh

Rahama is a bright 12-year old who came to Bangladesh nearly a year ago and unlike many other girls in the camp, Rahama likes to wear make-up and stay prim and proper.

She enjoys playing with her friends and going to school.

A year before she and others in her community escaped Myanmar, their schools were closed down and she could not learn, meet her friends or play freely.

She said:

The non-Muslims would chase and disturb us when we played outside.

While fleeing from Myanmar, Rahama lost all her friends in the journey. But after being here for months, she was able to locate some of them.

Many of her friends are living in Kutupalong camp. She has already visited them with her father. Rahama likes the school in the camp because the students receive more attention and care from the teachers than where she used to study in Myanmar.

She also likes visiting the Women-Friendly Space with her mother as she can play Ludo, her favorite board game. She aspires to be a teacher when she grows up, just like the ones in the camps.

Rahama Myanmar refugee in Bangladesh

As part of our work on protection against gender-based violence, CARE has set up five Women-Friendly Spaces and two information booths.

The Women-Friendly Spaces provide a space for women to find refuge, rebuild community, seek GBV-related and other counselling as required.

Materials for recreational activities including indoor games and trainings are also available in these centres. The direct outreach to date is over 29,000 women across the five Women-Friendly Spaces. For the open space and for the gaming activities, young women, adolescent girls and young children also enjoy coming to the Women-Friendly Space.

While most adults focus on citizen rights, when asked about repatriation, Rahama’s demand is very simple:

I will only like to return if I can play freely with my friends.

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News and stories are provided by CARE staff working to support our emergency responses and long-term development programmes.