Project Running
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Number of plants, farms, fry collection spots and respondents selected for the survey
Total Number
Selected Plants
(%) Selected
1. Shrimp processing plants in
sample districts
2. Shrimp farms
3. Shrimp fry collection spots
Total Number of working Children
Number ofworking Children Interviewed
(%) of the working Children
Shrimp processing plants
Shrimp farms
Fry collection spots
Other Respondents:
Total Number
Number Interviewed
( % )
Employers of Plants
Employers of Farms
  • Out of the total 26 members of the Executive Committee of both BFFEA and NSFA 9 members were available for the interview.

Achievement :-
Based on the findings of the survey it may be concluded that a good number of children is working in shrimp processing industries. The highest concentration is in shrimp fry collection. Most of these children working in shrimp industries are from families below the poverty line, not in schools and drop outs from schools. It seems that because of close monitoring by government agencies and organized efforts by BFFEA and NSFA the number of working children in shrimp plants and farms may be reduced or even eliminated but how the number of children collecting fries can be reduced and eliminated is a crucial issue which merits attention. Because, it was observed that a good number of children upto age 14 was engaged in fry collection in Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar, Bagerhat and Patuakhali areas which is close to sea-shore. The survey also found disparity in wages between the child workers and adults for the same type of work. The average working hours per day for the child workers was also higher than the prescribed working hours. Most of the working children and their parents indicated interest in education but because of economic hardship the children had to work to supplement their family income for survival. BFFEA and NSFA also expressed that there was need for working children’s education.

The children upto 14 years of age are engaged mainly in ice-breaking, packing, loading, unloading, peeling, defining and fish fry collection etc. Based on survey and interpolation it was calculated that 14,000 children upto 14 years of age were engaged in various activities. Therefore, any project for development of the working children should focus on these children.

Based on the survey findings what needed is a realistic comprehensive strategy. Formation of Parents and Teachers forum with wide networking, strengthening of public and non-government organizations working for children, ensuring pro-active role of media, community leaders, various professional bodies, monitoring proper implementation of existing legislations, among others, may be essential components of child labor elimination project. A coordinated functioning of all those components with limited time bound agenda like development of awareness programmes, formation of self-help groups among parents and children, organizing counselling, support and legal education for gradual elimination of child labour may be the beginning of any long-term strategy.

Any such project for elimination of child labour in Shimp industries will require active participation of Employers/Owners of industries Association, local government bodies and donor agencies. The following activities may be taken to address the problems of the working children in Shrimp industries.

  • Organization: The working children and their parents may be organized into informal functional groups through motivation and creation of social awareness. This will result into development of social relationships, fellow feelings, mutual understanding and support.
  • Human Resource development: Assessment of needs for skill development and potentials may be made. Training programmes for skill development and non-formal education may be initiated.
  • Economic development: In order to free the working children from hazardous job their families may be supported with micro-credit facilities for raising their income for a better living.

The implementation of the recommendations may have the following impact:

  • the working children will be organized;
  • access to basic services such as opportunity for basic education, health, water and sanitation;
  • removal from hazardous employment;
  • shifting from hazardous to non-hazardous employment in the same place of work;
  • improving economic condition of their families;
  • removal from exploitative employment; and
  • have improved quality of life.

The broad objective of the survey is to understand the overall socio-economic condition of the children engaged in the shrimp fry collection and shrimp processing industry.
The specific objectives of the proposed survey are as follows:

Activities :-

Out of 8 districts where shrimp processing industries are located, five districts i.e., Khulna, Chittagong, Bagerhat, Satkhira and Cox’s Bazar were selected for collecting relevant socio-economic information on the children engaged in the shrimp processing industries, shrimp farms and fry collection through administering a questionnaire. In addition, 17 fry collection spots in Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar and Patuakhali Sea-shore area were selected for the survey. These districts were selected because of the concentration of shrimp cultivation. Again from the selected districts, some areas were selected which are adjacent to the rivers. In this connection, information was also collected from Associations and the respective Thana Fisheries Officers.

As regards conducting of socio-economic survey of the children working in the shrimp processing industries, the list of the plants was collected from Headquarters of Directorate of Fisheries, and Bangladesh Frozen Foods Exporters Association. There are about 82 shrimp processing plants and 21,000 fish farms in Khulna, Satkhira, Bagerhat, Cox’s Bazar and Chittagong districts. 50% per cent plants and 5% fish farms were selected from each of the above mentioned districts as units for conducting a socio-economic survey of the children working in the shrimp processing industries on the basis of random sampling (lottery). However, some criteria were evolved to select the plants according to locations of plants by city boundaries, fringe and rural areas. A structured questionnaire and inventory were used to collect relevant information both from primary and secondary sources and selected respondents. A group of trained surveyors, each comprising two members totaling 5 teams, collected the information and conducted the field interviews. The data collection was supervised by the supervisors and the checking and cross-checking was done by the Research Team Members to ensure maximum accuracy of the data. In selecting the sample, a list of farms and industries for each sample district was prepared. These lists were treated as sampling frame using appropriate random sampling technique through lottery. All the working children of the selected farms and industries were interviewed using a pre-designed semi-structured interview schedule. The parents of working children, employers, office bearers and members of the BFFEA and National Shrimp Farmers Association (NSFA) were also interviewed with the structured questionnaire.
The units and respondents selected for the survey in the sample districts are shown below:


Introduction : The survey of working children in Seafood industry was undertaken by Integrated Service for Development of Children and Mothers(ISDCM) at the request of ILO. Prior to undertaking the survey a number of meeting between the concerned officials of ILO and ISDCM to discuss the concept paper and the survey proposal took place. Based on the concept paper for the survey and discussions with the ILO, the survey work was undertaken by ISDCM on the specific terms of reference. The report is the outcome of this effort.

The Objectives:

Donor & Agreement:
International Labour Organization (ILO), Project Code: A: 270.10.359.083
Area & Duration :
Satkhira, Chitagonag, Bagerhat and Cox’s Bazar.
March1999 – May1999.
Cost of Project :
BD TK. 493,100.00


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Copyright © 2006 Motion Technology, Bangladesh.
Title of Project:
Survey on Socio-Economic Condition of Children working in the Sea food Industries in Khulna, Satkhira, Bagerhat, Chittagong and Cox,s bazaar district of Bangladesh.