Thousands of children in Sierra Leone work as rock-breakers to help pay for their own education. They earn $1.00 (U.S.) per large plastic tub of finished gravel.
Education and child labour are often closely entwined in Sierra Leone, where schooling can impose a severe financial strain. Although primary education is nominally free, parents must pay for uniforms, books, pens, transport and in some cases contributions to teachers’ salaries. To send their children to school, therefore, many parents must also send them to work.
Children also work in Sierra Leone’s diamond mines which is reported to be keeping many out of school.