In Islam, memorizing the Qur’an is an honorable achievement. In Senegal, underprivileged families often send their sons to study the holy text in distant urban schools. These students, known as talibés, beg on the streets in order to support their religious education and financially strained instructors. While some believe that begging teaches the talibés lessons in humility, the practice has also generated a host of humanitarian concerns. Responding to international pressure, in 2010, the Senegalese government began to enforce a law against forced child begging.
This project was a collaborative effort with Tostan, a non-profit organization with programming that helps the talibés.