Children's Stories

Read about kids rescued from child labor and other GoodWeave beneficiaries. Instead of spending long days for little or no pay working on weaving looms, they are attending school preparing for their futures.

Sanju
Sanju grew up with her parents and seven siblings never knowing a life without debt. Her father sent her to Kathmandu with a labor broker to weave rugs. She worked sixteen hour days, and when she was finished weaving, she had to cook and clean for the broker and his wife.
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Iqbal Masih
A slave to the handmade rug industry at four years old, Iqbal Masih escaped after six years of servitude and traveled the world to raise awareness about child labor—until he was murdered for his activism at the age of 12.
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Biraj
Biraj worked at the factory from morning to night. He would care for the weavers’ children in the morning and switch to knotting carpets in the afternoon. Luckily, he was discovered by a GoodWeave inspector after only two weeks of labor.
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Sanu
Sanu was born into extreme poverty in a remote part of central Nepal. She wanted to be the first in her family to finish school, but dropped out of second grade to help her parents and five siblings survive. Seeking better returns from 10-year-old Sanu's work, her family was enticed by a labor broker to send her away to a carpet factory. She suffered headaches, vision problems and other health challenges but never received care.
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Sunita
Sunita was born to a poor family in central Nepal, a family whose soggy patch of land couldn't grow enough to feed them. When she was only two years old her father passed away from tuberculosis, her mother eloped a few years after, leaving the children to fend for themselves. Sunita moved in with an older sister and began babysitting, cooking and cleaning. The sister worked in a carpet factory, but her low wages couldn't support the household. Sunita had nowhere else to go – her brother was missing, working somewhere in the outskirts of Kathmandu, and her second sister could not help. Seven-year-old Sunita's only option was the carpet factory.
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Raj Kumari
When Raj Kumari was brought to Hamro Ghar, GoodWeave's rehabilitation center, at age 11, no one could have predicted that ten years later, her hard work would bring her back to GoodWeave as a teacher for rescued child laborers just like herself.
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Parang
Parang suffered years of pain and illness as an abused boy and child laborer in Nepal. Today, he aspires to become a doctor. With the support of GoodWeave, he will soon help others to overcome the pain he knows too well.
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Chhamu
Nine-year-old Chhamu lived peacefully in western Nepal until the country's violent civil war upended her family and her village. First, Chhamu's father left home. Next, her brother was pulled into the fighting when the militia threatened to kill him if he didn't enlist. Chhamu was recruited as well, but fled to safety in Kathmandu with her aunt.
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Nirmala
To help support their family, Nirmala and her brother were brought to Kathmandu from their home in central Nepal. Upon arrival in the city, their mother forced the siblings to become domestic servants for a butcher and his household. Ten-year-old Nirmala and her brother suffered frequent beatings and verbal abuse from the butcher's wife. In exchange, Nirmala's mother received around five dollars each month for her children's labor.
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Susmita
At first, poverty was the only challenge facing 12-year-old Susmita and her family. Her parents broke rocks by hand in central Nepal, earning just enough to rent a small house. When Susmita's father descended into alcoholism and refused to work, her mother struggled to make ends meet. The hardship grew worse when Susmita's grandparents both developed lung disease and required expensive treatments. Susmita's mother began taking loans not only for the medical bills, but for basic necessities such as food and rent.
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Bhuwan
Nepal's violent civil war tore apart 12-year-old Bhuwan Moktan's family. His older brother and sister died in the conflict. Broken by the loss, Bhuwan's father sank into depression and alcoholism, then further into mental illness. His mother grieved constantly and soon fell ill. Surrounded by tragedy, Bhuwan feared he would become the next victim. In desperation, he and a friend ran from their village in Nepal's lush plains and fled east to Kathmandu.
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Yangjom
Growing up in western Nepal's Mugu district, Yangjom dreamed of one day visiting Kathmandu. Her wish was granted, but under painful circumstances. When Yanjom was age 11, her parents gathered the family and crossed the country to Kathmandu in search of work.
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Purnima
Eleven-year-old Purnima was born in a Kathmandu factory where her parents worked as carpet weavers. She and her two younger brothers knew nothing about the outside world, but only the pain that came from her alcoholic fathers’ drunken rages and the hunger endured from barely eating two meals a day – all her mother’s insufficient salary could afford. In Purnima’s world, carpet weaving was a daily routine until June 29, 2010 when a GoodWeave Nepal inspector discovered her.
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Jaidul
13-year-old Jaidul and his family live in a small village in the Malda district of West Bengal. He and his mother, two sisters, brother and paralyzed father weave towels at home, but even with their combined effort, they can barely support themselves. Their wages cover just two meals a day for six people. Jaidul began to weave carpets at a factory in order to supplement the family’s meager income.
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Anu
Born and raised in Nepal’s Sindhupalchowk district, Anu is the youngest of a family of four children. Anu’s parents had a difficult time raising her and her siblings with the little money they earned working in a carpet factory. Though they were illiterate, Anu’s parents understood the importance of education and let their children attend school. Anu’s three older brothers were the first to attend, but after money ran out, they had to drop out and work in the carpet factory.
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