Bhim Basti, Shanti and Bapu Colony are three adjacent slums on the outskirts of Delhi. They were “founded” by landless farmers from regions like Bihar or Radjastan. Since urban living space is priceless for these families, they build huts and modest houses here. A new, small, poor city is emerging.
In the communities, families with several generations live together under one roof. If possible, the men work as day laborers – often there is only one person in the families with a reasonably regular income.

Most houses have electricity and it is not uncommon for there to be a television in the household. The water is supplied by state tankers and stored in large water tanks that are in front of the houses and on the roofs.
Septic tanks are used for the wastewater, which are also emptied by state vehicles. There is no waste disposal, so the outskirts of the communities are extremely dirty.
In winter, heating is usually done with a fire bowl. Wood is burned on the street, then the bowl of hot embers is brought into the house to spread heat.
What is rarely enough in winter: You sleep with a hat and jacket. In most families, several people share a bed.
Every family cooks at least once a day, yet the diet is one-sided – many children suffer from deficiency symptoms. All families are dependent on the state health system, which, however, usually offers them inadequate medical care.
Despite all these hardships and limitations, the children of the families, especially the girls, are extremely committed and eager to learn: their hunger for learning and their struggle for a better future are fascinating.


Out of respect for our students, we do not show overly dramatic photos on this page. The material that is created during the workshops and shootings offers many private, even shocking insights into the living situation of the families.
As striking as these images are, using them to call for donations would mean putting the purpose – albeit a good one – over the means and instrumentalizing our students. We don’t want that.