Today marks the one-year anniversary of the Rana Plaza disaster in Dhaka, Bangladesh. More than 1,100 people were killed. As detailed in this story, some progress has been made in improving conditions for Bangladeshi factory workers, but there is still a long way to go, particularly as large American retailers like Target and Wal-Mart haven’t signed on to the international inspection agreement. (They say they’re doing their own inspections.)

The victims’ fund also remains critically underfunded as many brands that bought clothes from the factory—including JC Penney and Benetton—have failed to make contributions.

Watch on

Nerdfighters in Bangladesh were able to petition a local theatre to show The Fault in Our Stars. To celebrate their success, they made this fan-made promo. Movie debuts this July 18th in Dhaka.


Bangladesh (গণপ্রজাতন্ত্রী বাংলাদেশ )

BANGLADESH, Dhaka : A Bangladeshi mourner and relative of a victim of the Rana Plaza building collapse reacts as she takes part in a protest marking the first anniversary of the disaster at the site where the building once stood in Savar on the outskirts of Dhaka on April 24, 2014. The Rana Plaza building collapsed on April 24, 2013, killing 1138 workers in the world’s worst garment factory disaster. Western fashion brands faced pressure to increase help for victims as mass protests marked the anniversary. Thousands of people, some wearing funeral shrouds, staged demonstrations at the site of the now-infamous Rana Plaza factory complex. AFP PHOTO / Munir uz ZAMAN

"I didn’t do much study, only up to Year 5. It wasn’t my dad’s fault, it’s my own fault that I didn’t complete my studies."

"Do you regret it?"
"I feel bad about it now, sometimes I wonder why I left my education because there are instances where I can’t do a basic question. It’s not bad selling tea, but I feel embarrassed when I see people I know. It gets me by, but I ruined my own life. I’m gaining other skills, practising driving so my hope is that once I can be a driver, I’ll be able to give my parents some money and I’ll be able to save some money for my future. I’m growing up now, I’ll have to get married and I need some stability. I’ve finished learning how to drive but can’t get a licence.”

"In Bangladesh, everyone bribes their way to a licence, why not do the same?"
"Not everyone is dishonest. Why should I bribe my way to a licence when I worked so hard to do it the honest way?"

“My son is really good at studies but my husband has become mentally ill so I solely have to provide for our household. It got to a stage where I had to choose between paying for my son’s education or running my household. My son cried at the thought of having to give up his education, his teacher called me to ask why I was considering giving up on such a bright future for him but what was I supposed to do? My son-in-law helps a lot with expenses but there’s only so much I can ask from him. There have been so many meals that I’ve missed to keep things going. I’m barely pushing along, I just hope my son can make something of himself through his studies.”