Salim, Shikha, Kajal and their friends – all in the age group of 10 to 15 – are working hard to put their sprawling Kolkata slum on the map. Relentlessly collecting data about their huts, the people, the temples, trees, water sources and more all around the Rishi Aurobindo Colony in Kolkata, these children aim to let the world know they exist and also showcase their problems and achievements.
“With this map, everyone in the world will know we are here. We are a community with many issues and ideas, just like anybody,” Salim says.
Along with mapping, they’ve been gathering lists of residents’ concerns and taking concrete steps in fighting polio and malaria, helping impoverished children attend school, finding water sources and improving public hygiene.