Sohagi is fighting so her city — and girls like her — will survive.
Dhaka is one of the fastest growing cities in the world, but it can’t accommodate its exploding population, so many people are forced to live in slums. That’s where Sohagi lives.
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Sohagi’s slum is surrounded by a man-made, polluted lake, and the entire area floods with dirty water when monsoon season arrives. And things are getting worse because of climate change.
“The monsoon season comes every year, but it’s falling earlier, lasts longer and is more unpredictable,” said Sohagi. “Our community is getting waterlogged, sometimes for weeks.”
Who is the hardest hit when it comes to effects from climate change? It’s girls.
Climate change can mean a shortage of food, and often girls are the ones who go hungry. And if their parents pull them out of school to help find food and water, girls are more likely to never return to the classroom. Climate change causes more poverty, which means more girls have to start working early or get married too young.
Sohagi is determined to create change. She’s a youth advocate with Plan, and has been involved in several projects aimed at improving conditions in the slums.
“We, the next generation, are part of the solution,” Sohagi said. “The future depends on us. Let’s get to work - for us, for Dhaka, for the planet.”