Dinobondhu Malo feeds his family on his average daily income of BDT 250 (approximately USD 3) working as a fisherman. He lives with his wife Prasullah Rani, three year old son Diganta and a young daughter Priya who is just a little over a year old. The house they inhabited looked like a poorly made patchwork quilt. One side has walls of CI sheet and another had walls made of bamboo mats. The structure is flimsy at best and was at risk of falling apart in the slightest bit if wind.
“We had a broken house and faced terrible problems in every season. We had minimal protection from the summer heat and monsoon would bring untold horrors of rainy nights, stormy winds, and leaking roof. Water would leak in from all directions. In winter we would be frozen to the bones in this house made of bamboo mats”, describes Dinobondhu. He says that his children would remain sick all year round. Building himself a new house was a far cry when he barely managed to bring food home each day. They lived their life amidst uncertainty in all aspects. Fishing only yields seasonal output and there are times when scarcity of fish in the nearby canals and riverine keeps him unemployed for a significant part of the year. Alternative employment opportunities are limited in their small village.
Dinobondhu heard about Habitat’s work in their village from the locals. He was informed about Habitat Bangladesh’s initiative under the KOICA funded project to provide housing support to impoverished people without proper houses. He applied for a house and after a routine survey of their condition, he received news of being selected as a beneficiary. “This brick house has a proper door and windows which ensures our safety and security. It has given us a better environment to live in.” says Dinobondhu standing in his new house. He is ecstatic and eternally grateful to KOICA and Habitat Bangladesh.