idp bathroom, batticaloa

some people are not born poor, but made poor. the idps that now live in navallady, batticaloa, in the former tsunami buffer zone (no permanent house should have been there, the former residents were all resettled) had their homes in the trincomalee district. the civil war came, they were driven out of their houses in the combat- or security zone and now live under most primitive conditions in sheds made of tarpaulins, corrugated tin sheets and leaves. you count the toothbrushes? 8 people live here, in a hut maybe 3,5×5 m¬≤.

idp bathroom, batticaloa(2) and i learned a lot about gender budgeting, too (it pays to travel with the boss, who is a psychiatrist by education): if there is a male head of family, there will be: a mobile phone, a tv set (to watch cricket), a small motobike…

but the number of male-headed families is small. the usual story reads more like “lost husband in the conflict, lost the son, fleeing, now living with the small kids here until knowbody knows when, little support, fear, discrimination (by army/police)”. I spare you the details. It is simply incredible.


  1. I'm intrigued by the stories your sharing with us at the moment. A glimpse into a life difficult to imagine for us wealthy westerners

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