After reporting the first case on 8 March 2020, Bangladesh now has nearly 120,000 confirmed cases of covid-19 and 1,545 deaths. It is 10th on the list of countries that have been worst affected by covid-19 globally, and the high number of new cases – particularly in and around Dhaka – means that the total number of cases could keep climbing. In addition, testing rates are among the lowest in the world. Underreporting of infections and deaths is suspected and the health system is finding it hard to cope with the influx of patients. Starting on 26 March 2020, a state-sanctioned shutdown led to the suspension of public transport and closure of private and public offices all throughout the country, and resulted in people being confined to their homes. The Ministry of Education closed all educational institutions and both the Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSC) and equivalent examinations were postponed indefinitely. According to the most recent announcements, all educational institutes will remain shut until 6 August 2020. However, from 1 June the lockdown has been partially lifted and public transport, public and private offices and business have been reopened, albeit on a limited scale.
This brief is part of a cross-country series designed to share emerging findings in real time from qualitative interviews with adolescents in the context of Covid-19. The young people involved are part of the Gender and Adolescence: Global Evidence (GAGE) programme’s longitudinal research sample. This report includes findings from 30 in-depth interviews with adolescents (20 female and 10 male) consisting of 8 younger (aged 12–15) and 22 older (aged 16–19) cohort adolescents from three sites, including two peri-urban slum areas and one low-income settlement in Dhaka.
Farheen Ria, A., Ahmed Raha, S., Rana, S., Roy, P., Aktar, T., Al Mamun, S., Hasan Anik, M. and Alam, F. (2020) ‘Listening to young people’s voices under covid-19. Exploring the impact of covid-19 on adolescents in urban slums and low-income settlements in Dhaka, Bangladesh.’ Policy brief. London: Gender and Adolescence: Global Evidence. (https://www.gage.odi.org/publication/exploring-the-impact-of-covid-19-on-adolescents-in-urban-slums-in-dhaka-bangladesh/)