Afghan girl gets up most mornings to pick through rubbish to support hungry family

There are hundreds of children just like Rabia in Kabul. She spoke to ITV News Correspondent John Ray and showed him her home, which is just a single room where her family lives.

Rabia, who is just a young girl, spends most mornings at work at one of the roadside rubbish dumps in Afghanistan's capital.

She searches for plastic bottles to resell to recyclers and she scavenges for food that her family might eat.

"I get tired and I get ill and I feel cold. And of course, I can be afraid. If there are other children with me, it's ok. But when I'm alone, I'm scared," Rabia tells ITV News.

But even these food scraps are not enough to feed her family. She helps support two younger sisters, a 10-day-old brother, her mother and her disabled father.

And once a day, she gets a dish full of rice from an Afghan charity.

Rabia picking rubbish. Credit: ITV News

There are hundreds just like Rabia, whose parents were themselves children when they fled the war in faraway provinces.

Her school teacher Njibullah Sadat says he sees the mental and physical scars of poverty in every one of his pupils.

He said: "There is hope - but only if the international community and the Afghanistan government can work together to help us is there a chance of a better future."

In the upheaval of war, and in years of fighting between Taliban forces and the former Afghan government, nearly six million people have been forced from their homes.

Three-and-a-half million are still displaced within Afghanistan - with many living in camps.

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