Innocent Feet

Shaheen (10 years old) does not feel badly anymore to walk with empty feet. Five months ago when he first started walking without sandals, broken pieces of glass and small sheets of tin oftentimes cut his feet. Sometimes when he would hop onto a running train to save himself from the station inspector, the damaged surface of the train’s step would injure his bare feet which caused him much suffering for some nights. In pain, he could not work for a few days. Nowadays, Shaheen thinks dirt layer surfaces for his feet are actually saving him from injuries.

Abu saleh

Abu Saleh (11)

Ali noor (10 )Ali Noor (10)

Ali raj (12)

Ali Raj (12)

Arman (10)

Arman (10)

Badshah (9)

Badshah (9)

When Shaheen’s mother was alive she used to put oil on his hands, legs and hair. Shaheen knew his mother well and if she could see him now, she would do it again. She had never beaten him ever. But after her death when the new mother arrived, she and his father used to beat him every night. Often he had to spend the night in the yard in front of the closed door of his father’s house. One morning last summer, Shaheen left his village and took the train which was coming to Dhaka. He no longer misses his past except for his mother.

Shahin (10)

Shaheen (10)

bappi (11)

Bappi (11)

Emon ali (12)

Emon Ali (12)



Now he carries the goods of passengers in the train station in bare feet. Even if he wishes to buy a pair of sandals, how will he manage money? And if he does manage to buy them, how will he safeguard them? Yesterday his friend Ismail’s new sandals were stolen and Ismail cried for the whole day. He had bought them with 150 taka by saving two days of income. Ismail now collects empty plastic bottles to sell in the recycle shop and has not spoken to anyone since he lost his sandals.



IMG_8870 ibrahim 11,  (1)


IMG_8870 ibrahim 11,  (4)

Ibrahim ii


Like Shaheen and Ismail, Shakil, Jahangir, Baii, Imon Ali, Arman, Emon, Fahim, hundreds of children are moving around in the train station in bare feet. All of them are living in the same condition. Some came here a few months ago and some came years ago.

IMG_9005 alamin (8)

Alamin (8)

Tonni 12

Tonni (9)

Shahin (10)

Every one of them has two similarities. One is that they all walk the whole day in bare feet in order to earn bread and the other is the tragedy of their lives. Most of them left home because of the loss of their parents, or torture by their step parents, or because of acute poverty.

Jahangir 13

Jahangir (13)

With those small bare feet they used to run away by escaping the eyes of the station master or station police. When the trains arrive or passengers come, they run swiftly over the hot stoned train tracks and take a load on their heads. If they get 10 taka (one cent) they buy nuts for lunch and if they can earn more, they can have rice and lentils. This 7-12 year-old children’s feet are telling the tales of their fate: evidence that tells how they are bearing their lonely young lives on those innocent feet.

Oli noor 7

Oil Noor (7)

sami hamja (10)

sahin 8 from borisal  (1)

 A question to humanity from a 11 year old Maruf:

‘No one cares for us. I cut my feet by broken piece of tin. It bleeds for days but no one stops and asks to help me. Like me hundreds of children are walking in bare feet and no one ever asks us if they can give a pair of slipper. Isn’t this a selfish world with cold hearted people.’



Can we together prove him wrong? Can you donate slippers for these street children and show them that we care about their suffering, their bare feet matters to us? Can we?

I am going to gift slippers to these street children on 7th January, 2016. If you want to donate for slippers please email at you can donate slippers (size 33 – size 40) at our address; To know details you can also message me at facebook (

Sakil (13)

Lastly I hope my favorite quote will inspire you as much as it inspires me:

I am only one, but I am still one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.

sami hamja 10, mother died ,  father is a heroin addict

Sami Hamja


30 thoughts on “Innocent Feet

  1. Hi Akash great work. How can I donate from Australia. I hope you make PayPal an option for donation but let me know if I can send Western Union etc



      • Good day, Sir GMB AKASH,
        Tell me, please, how I can send you a message ?
        Please forgive me, but I want to delete my comment on this page from March 29, 2020 at 9:08 am
        Thank you and all the best, with health and happiness, in peace ! ~ 🙏


  2. Your quote above: ‘I am only one, but I am still one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.’ Reminds me of the Star Thrower Story that I heard a few years back at a corporate training event. You may like it:


  3. What a heartbreaking story and sad that there are so many children’s stories to tell like this. I would love to donate. Please advise how I can do this!

    Thanks for always documenting these issues and giving these people a voice.



  4. This is really a beautiful post Akash ~ a difficult life for these people no doubt, some heartbreaking, but it also seems that they are beautiful people – incredible spirits. This is a beautiful way to bring in the New Year, reading such a post and the series of photos you present. The best to you with your writing and photography in the New Year.


  5. Pingback: Adni nagyon nagyon jó! | FérfiÉrzelmek

  6. This post is wonderful. For me, in my case, I see all this from a different perspective. In my childhood, I was poor, but I felt this as great wealth and happiness. I lived barefoot 6 years, nonstop, even in winter. Because at that time, at the beginning of the 1960s, all the children were without shoes, especially in that village near Bucharest. This was “fashion”, to be barefoot, so healthy and happy. I had many good friends in that period of my life, and many people who loved me, helped me, taught me to read books and gave me work. And I worked, barefoot and happy. And if anyone wanted to give me shoes, I categorically refused. My bare feet were my best shoes.
    So, seeing these dirty feet, I remembered the happiness of my childhood. I remembered all my friends and parents who left this world. But my pleasure to go barefoot is still alive. I go barefoot anywhere and whenever I want to feel the true freedom (in the city or forests), being in direct contact with Mother Nature. And for that, I just pull out my old flip-flops or sandals (I can’t and don’t like to wear shoes). I am a “barefoot hiker” and I like to go mainly through the mountains.
    So, dear Mr. Akash, I thank you very much for this artwork, and I congratulate you. And also, I wish you all the best, with health and happiness, in peace !
    Sincerely, Dinu, 60, from Romania.


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