We only use your email address to send you the newsletter and to see how many people are opening our emails. A full privacy policy can be viewed here. You can change your mind at any time and update your preferences or unsubscribe.

A day in the life of Hafsa

12:00 am

18-year-old Hafsa is a Rohingya girl who lives in the Kutupalong Mega Camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, with her father. She has never attended school. However, she is going to a Women Friendly Space called Shantikhana to attend Sexual and Reproductive Health (SHR) sessions organised by Action Aid, an NGO active in the refugee camps. Hafsa loves to learn and is happy to attend the sessions.

9:00 am

Hafsa lives in a shelter which has only two rooms and is made out of tarpaulin and bamboo sticks. She sleeps in the same room where she cooks. She spends most of her waking hours doing household chores and looking after her father, who has health problems rendering him unable to work. In the morning, she prepares breakfast with the rations she gets from the World Food Programme (WFP).

11:00 am

Hafsa likes to cook, it is one of her favourite activities. She also likes to visit her neighbours. After cooking breakfast, Hafsa frequently goes to her neighbour’s house to chat with them. They chat about everything in the camp, food rationing cuts and gossip about love.

2:00 pm

Hafsa loves spending time with her father and cares for him. Her father has asthma and can’t work because of his medical condition. Her dad  is a devout believer in Islam. Furthermore, he has already completed 3 million “La ilaha illallah” (an Islamic oath) over the past 20 years. To help support his family, he has to go out to beg for money

Hafsa explains that the family get food assistance from WFP but that the amount of food rations they get is not enough for them. In Hafsa’s words, “Nowadays, the WFP has reduced the amount of the ration, and they do not give us spices anymore, so my father has to beg to buy food.” She can’t afford the masala spices that she uses to make the fish, vegetablesand rice that she prepares tasty

11:00 pm

Hafsa’s life becomes miserable when it rains heavily and storms blow. As there are no drain pipes on or around their house and their hut is built on low land, water leaks into their house. Sometimes, at night when there is a storm or monsoon,  Hafsa has to stay up the whole night to clean out the water from her home. It was the worst during Cyclone Mocha: the heavy winds took off the tarpaulin from their roof and destroyed the bamboo walls. The Turkish Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD), the aid department of the Turkish government, helped them to rebuild the house and donated tarpaulin.