Dhaka is one of the largest cities in the world, with a population of over 16 million people. It is also one of the fastest growing cities and every year around 400,000 more people move here to find work.
As Bangladesh's capital, it is at the heart of economic and political life in the country, and is home to a rapidly growing middle class. Despite this, many people throughout the Dhaka continue to live in poverty, struggling to make ends meet.
Children from poor backgrounds often don't get the chances they deserve early in their lives. Many are forced to go out and work to supplement their parents insecure incomes, making them vulnerable to exploitation and abuse.
For children who have to work at such a young age, education is a luxury that most will never get to experience. This lack of opportunity early in life means that they will often struggle to achieve their full potential later on.
The growth rate of Dhaka's population is one of the fastest in the world and has made it very difficult to provide a range of essential services to people living here. Whilst this impacts everyone in the city, migrants are particularly badly affected by the overstretched infrastructure.
New migrants often live in slums on the fringes of the city and life here is hard and very insecure. They have no access to electricity or clean water and few educational opportunities, robbing them of even a basic standard of living.
How we are helping
This was our first SOS Children's Village in Bangladesh, having opened in 1973. It continues to be at the centre of our work in the country as we work to make sure that all children get the support they need.
Our family strengthening programme targets families that are at risk of breaking down and abandoning their children. We ensure that children have access to vital services, like education and healthcare, and offer parents a range of advice and training as well tangible support, such as our day-care facility for working parents.
We also respond to one-off emergencies, such as the storms and floods of 1991. We worked with local groups and other NGOs to make sure that all children got the help they needed in this difficult time.
The 15 SOS families who care for over 100 children are the heart of our work in Dhaka. These give children who have lost parental care a new home, the love of a dedicated SOS mother, and the support they need to grow up healthy and happy.
All of the children in the SOS Children's Village attend the SOS School, which offers education to up to 1,120 pupils from the local area. This is an essential service for people here and also gives children from SOS families the chance to make friends in the local community.
When they are old enough, children from the SOS Children's Village can leave their families and join the SOS youth programme. Here, they are supported by trained counsellors as they shoulder increasing responsibility and take their first independent steps in life.
Children in Dhaka without anyone else need your help today. When you sponsor a child in Bangladesh, you give a vulnerable child love, care and a bright future.