Photo-essays Mullaitivu District

Kanji to live on

Brief: A 52-year-old mother of five.

  • 1
    I was born in 1960, got married in 1980 and thereafter my five children were born. We came here one year ago. The children could not go to school. My husband also fell ill and died. My second son has no leg and his arm is twisted as well. When that happened the Army took him to hospital. My son does some fishing with his brother.
  • 2
    I had to leave my village in 1990. We kept moving from place to place. We also lived in camps for displaced people. My brother was hit by a shell and killed. More than ten relatives died in the war because of the shelling. Because of the trauma my mother lost her mind. We all thought we were going to die. We had lost hope.
  • 3
    The Red Cross gave the money to build the house. The Government did not help. We are building a permanent house with ICRC’s help. Forut gave us the temporary shelter.
  • 4
    My daughter is doing her A-levels. I would like to open a small shop. My third son is a labourer and he gives me some money.
  • 5
    We have four acres of land that we can’t cultivate because the security forces are still there. Today things are very expensive. We are concerned about making a living. But we are moving forward very slowly.
  • 6
    Now of course we can live peacefully even if we have only kanji to live on. We are no longer afraid.