Written By: Allie Eliza - Jun• 15•14


“From a palace for a little Princess to sleeping under the stars on a pile of rubbish:

Photographs from around the world show where our children slumber
Photographer James Mollison travelled around the world to capture children’s bedrooms 
The project, Where Children Sleep is set to highlight children’s rights across the globe
Children, and their bedrooms, come from all over the world, from China to the U.S. to Brazil


PUBLISHED: 09:30 GMT, 3 April 2014 | UPDATED: 13:43 GMT, 3 April 2014″


The difference between east and west, rich and poor becomes stark when looking at how our children sleep at night.

Where Children Sleep, a project by photographer James Mollison, is set to highlight children’s rights by contrasting the different living situations for young people across the globe.

We meet nine-year-old Dong from China who sleeps underneath a poster of Chairman Mao with his parents and sister; Roathy, eight, from Cambodia who lives on a rubbish tip; Kaya, four, from Tokyo, whose mother makes her at least three new dresses a month; and Indira from Nepal who has worked in the local granite quarry since the age of three.

‘I found myself thinking about my bedroom: how significant it was during my childhood, and how it reflected what I had and who I was,’ Mr Mollison said.

‘It occurred to me that a way to address some of the complex situations and social issues affecting children would be to look at the bedrooms of children in all kinds of different circumstances.’














Roathy, aged eight, Phnom Penh, Cambodia: Roathy lives with his family on a rubbish tip, on the outskirts of the Cambodian capital along with an estimated five thousand people who all pay rent to live on the dump. His bed is made of old tyres. At 6am every morning, Roathy and hundreds of other children are given a shower and breakfast at a local charity centre, which is often the only meal of the day. He then spends his day working, collecting cans and plastic his family sells on to a recycling company

Jyoti, aged 14, Makwanpur, Nepal-

Jyoti, aged 14, Makwanpur, Nepal: Jyoti left school at a young age in order to become a domestic worker, but was treated so badly she ran away and now lives with one of her sisters in the Nepalese countryside where she works in the fields. The family sleep on mats on the mud floor with an open fire for cooking and warmth

Joey, aged 11, Kentucky, U.S











Joey, aged 11, Kentucky, U.S.: Joey is an avid hunter and regularly accompanies his father into the woods. He is very proud of his two shotguns and crossbow and made his first kill- a deer- when he was just seven. He is hoping to use his crossbow during the next hunting season as he has become tired of using a gun. He loves the outdoors and says he does not believe animals should be killed for sport, but be used for food and clothing. He lives with his parents, sister and bearded dragon Lily


Tristan, seven, New York, U.S.-











Tristan, seven, New York, U.S.: Tristan lives with his father, a film maker, and his mother, a pop culture writer, in Manhattan, New York where he attends an Eco-School where no religious holidays are observed. His favorite food is bacon and he has pizza every weekend. When he grows up, he wants to become a creator of marmalade


Kaya, aged four, Tokyo, Japan











Kaya, aged four, Tokyo, Japan: Kaya’s bedroom is filled with her favorite toys – she prefers bunnies and dolls, and her wardrobe is filled with dresses her mother makes for her – she normally gets three new dresses every month – and her father works as a railroad mechanic. Her favourite foods are meat, potatoes, strawberries and peaches. She wants to be a cartoonist when she grows up


Tzvika, aged nine years old











Tzvika, aged nine years old, Beitar Illit, West Bank: Tzvika lives in a gated community of 36,000 Orthodox Jews in an Israeli settlement on the West Bank. Televisions and newspapers are banned from the settlement. The average family has nine children, but Tzvika has just one sister and two brothers, with whom he shares his room.  even though his school is just a two-minute walk away, he is taken by car every day. Religion is the most important subject, followed by Hebrew and maths. Sport is banned from the curriculum. Tzvika also likes to play religious games on his computer and wants to be a rabbi when he grows up. His favourite food is schnitzel and chips



Prena, aged 14, Kathmandu, Nepal










Prena, aged 14, Kathmandu, Nepal: Prena is a domestic worker and lived in a small cell-like space at the top of the house of the family she works for. Prena carries out household chores such as sweeping, cleaning, cooking and washing. She starts work at five in the morning and finishes at six in the evening. For this, she earns five hundred Nepali rupees per month (about £3.13). She sends the money back to her parents, who have eight other children, and visits her family twice a year. The light in her life is school, which she attends three times a week – and she hopes to be a doctor when she grows up



Lamine, aged 12, Bounkiling Village, Senegal










Lamine, aged 12, Bounkiling Village, Senegal: Lamine attends the local all-boys Koran school and shares a room with several other pupils. His day starts at six o’clock when he and the other boys work on the school farm digging, harvesting and ploughing, and in the afternoon the boys study the Koran. In his free time, Lamine likes to play football with his friends and when he grows up he would like to be a teacher


Ryuta, aged ten, Tokyo, Japan










Ryuta, aged ten, Tokyo, Japan: Ryuta is a champion sumo wrestler and has been competing since he was three years old. He eats three large meals a day to keep his champion weight, and he is admired at his school because he never loses a wrestling match. Ryuta, who lives with his parents and younger sister, also belongs to the scout movement and was photographed in his uniform. I the future, he dreams of becoming a TV show host, but also hopes of having a family



Delanie, aged nine, New Jersey











Delanie, aged nine, New Jersey, U.S.: Delanie lives with her parents and younger brother and sister in a large house in New Jersey and has a bedroom to herself. She spends a lot of time on her appearance, and can take hours each night to pick out an outfit for the next day She hates schoolwork and would rather go shopping and dancing. When she grows up she would like to be a fashion designer and design her own clothes


Jaime, aged nine, New York











Jaime, aged nine, New York, U.S.: Jaime lives in a topfloor apartment on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan but his parents also own luxury homes in Spain and in the Hamptons on Long Island. He attends an exclusive and very expensive private school and particularly enjoys computer class, spelling and woodwork, but not geometry. In his spare time, apart from judo classes, swimming lessons, playing the cello and kickball, Jaime likes to study his finances on the Citibank website. When he grows up, he would like to be a lawyer like his father


Indira, aged seven, Kathmandu, Nepal











Indira, aged seven, Kathmandu, Nepal: Indira has been working in the local granite quarry with her parents since she was three years old. She works five or six hours a day before helping her mother with household chores. Her house has only one room, with one bed and one mattress which she shares with her brother and sister. She also attends school, which is a thirty minute walk away and  would like to be a Nepalese dancer when she grows up



Ahkôhxet, aged eight, river Amazon, Brazil











Ahkôhxet, aged eight, river Amazon, Brazil: Ahkôhxet is a member of the Kraho tribe, who live in the basin of the river Amazon. There are only 1,900 members of the tribe. The Kraho people believe that the sun and moon were creators of the universe, and the red paint on Ahkôhxet’s chest is from one of his tribe’s rituals. The tribe grow and hunt their own foods, and any other material they need  is bought using money earned from film crews and photographers who visit their camp



Alex, aged nine, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil











Alex, aged nine, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Alex does not go to school and instead spends his time begging on the city streets and stealing. Although he is in contact with his family, he is addicted to sniffing glue and sleeps on the streets. He sleeps on empty benches or a discarded sofa if he can find one – otherwise on the pavement



Thais, aged 11, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil










Thais, aged 11, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Thais shares one of the bedrooms in her family’s flat with her sister. The family lives in the notorious Cidade de Deus – the City of God – in Rio’s slum. She loves Brazilian pop singer Felipe Dylon, and dreams of becoming a model, like Gisele Bundchen, or a paediatrician



Dong, aged nine, Yunnan, Southwest China










Dong, aged nine, Yunnan, Southwest China: Dong lives with his parents, sister and grandfather. He shares a room with his sister and parents, who own just enough land to grow their own rice and sugar cane. Dong walks twenty minutes to get to school where he enjoys writing and singing. His favourite food is pork, sweets and ice cream. He dreams of becoming a policeman when he grows up


Jasmine, aged four, Kentucky












Jasmine, aged four, Kentucky, U.S.: ‘Jazzy’ lives in a big house in with her parents and three brothers in the Kentucky countryside. Her bedroom is full of crowns and sashes which she has won in some of the hundreds of pageants she has entered. She enters one every weekend, costing her parents thousands of dollars. Her spare time is completely taken up with preparation and rehearsal. She practises her stage routines every day with a trainer who teaches her new steps. Jazzy enjoys being treated like a princess,  having her hair done and wearing pretty clothes and make-up and would like to be a rock star when she grows up


Romanian boy, aged four, Rome, Italy











Romanian boy, aged four, Rome, Italy: Not wanting to give his name, this Romanian boy sleeps on a mattress in a field on the outskirts of Rome. The family came from Romania by bus after begging to get money for the tickets. Although they recently lived in a tent,  police threw them off the site for trespassing and they now share the mattress in the open air. This boy spends his days by the road while his parents clean car windscreens at traffic lights. No one in his family has ever been to school


Justin, aged eight, from New Jersey










Justin, aged eight, from New Jersey, U.S.: Justin is obsessed with sports and has decorated his room in honour of his passions. He plays American football, basketball and baseball, but football is his favourite. He lives with his family in a four-bedroom house and rides the bus to school with the children from his neighbourhood. High-achieving Justin wants to become the mayor of New Jersey, but says he would settle for being a professional poker player

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