Mothers and Daughters – Hopes and Dreams

March 7, 2014

By Reuters Photographers

On March 8 activists will celebrate International Women’s Day, which dates back to the early 20th Century and has been observed by the United Nations since 1975.

In the run-up to the event, Reuters photographers in countries around the globe took a series of portraits of women and their daughters.

They asked each mother what her profession was, at what age she had finished education, and what she wanted her daughter to become when she grew up.

They also asked each daughter at what age she would finish education and what she wanted to do in the future. The series of images they produced offers an insight into the lives of women and girls around the world.

Photographed by Feisal Omar, Somalia

Saciido Sheik Yacquub, 34, poses for a picture with her daughter Faadumo Subeer Mohamed, 13, at their home in a camp for internally displaced people in Mogadishu.

Saciido wanted to be a businesswoman when she was a child. She studied until she was 20 and she now runs a small business. She hopes that Faadumo will become a doctor.

Faadumo will finish school in 2017 and also hopes to be a doctor when she grows up.


Photographed by Khalil Ashawi, Syria

Bidaa Mhem Thabet al-Hasan (Um Suleiman), 39, poses with her daughter Mariam Khaled Masto, 9, outside their home in Deir al-Zor.

Bidaa is the director of a school founded by a group of teachers and volunteers. When she was younger she was interested in science and her ambition was to become a gynaecologist. However, due to family difficulties she dropped school after completing the baccalaureate. She eventually finished her education in 2010.

Bidaa hopes that her daughter will study pharmacy, but says that she will let her follow her own ambitions. She says her daughter’s success will make her happy.

Mariam will finish her education in 13 years. She would like to become an Arabic teacher in Deir al-Zor.

Photographed by Zohra Bensemra, Pakistan.

Tadjroshan, 40, poses for a photograph with her daughter Ayman, 12, at their house in a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad.

Tadjroshan said that she only went to school for two years, just long enough to learn to read the Koran. She then continued to practice reading at home and she now teaches the Koran to local girls.

She would like her daughter to fulfill her dream and go to university. Ayman wants to become a doctor, and hopes that her parents will fund her study. She will need to study for 17 more years to become a general practitioner.

Photographed by Darren Staples, Britain

Claire Coyne, 43, poses for a photograph with her daughter Ella, 10, at their home in Shepshed, central England.

Claire, an assistant banker at Coutts, studied until she was 15. Her ambition as a child was to be a Physical Education (P.E) teacher. She said that she doesn’t mind what her daughter becomes, as long as she enjoys herself.

Ella hasn’t thought about when she will finish education yet, but says that she might like to go to university. She’s not sure what she would like to do when she grows up, but probably wants to be a dance teacher.

Photographed by Umit Bektas, Turkey

Tahsiye Ozyilmaz, 33, and her daughter Halime, 14, pose for a photograph at their home in Zeytinpinar Village of Derik, a Kurdish town in Mardin Province.

Tahsiye, who is a housewife, didn’t go to school. She says would have liked to become a teacher, but she had an arranged marriage at the age of 17. She wants her daughter to finish her education, and would like her to become a doctor.

Halime stopped going to school last year because it was 10 km from her house and the journey was too difficult.

The 14-year-old says she would have liked to become a doctor, but now this is impossible. She thinks she will have an arranged marriage when she is 17 or 18, like her mother did.

Photographed by Joe Penney, Mali

Oumou Ndiaye, 30, and her daughter Aissata Golfa, 9, pose for a picture in their house in Bamako.

Oumou, who is a housewife, did not go to school. As a child she hoped to marry a local businessman. She hopes her daughter will marry someone from their ethnic group when she grows up, and that she will stay in education until she is 20 years old.

Aissata says that she will finish school when she is 18, and wants to be a schoolteacher.

Photographed by Omar Sobhani, Afghanistan

Noor Zia, 40, poses for a photograph with her daughter Saba Ahmadi, 11, at their home in Kabul.

Noor, who is a teacher, studied until she was 28. Her ambition was to become a doctor, but she couldn’t afford the fees. She hopes her daughter will become a well known, highly skilled doctor.

Saba wants to go to university, and would like to become a renowned lawyer.

Photographed by Mansi Thapliyal, India

Sulochna Mohan Sawant, 23, poses for a picture with her daughter Shamika Sawant, 5, inside their home in Mumbai.

Sulochna, who works as a maid, wanted to become a doctor when she was a child. However, the school she attended was far from her home and she could only study until the age of 14.

Sulochna says she doesn’t want her daughter to follow the same profession as her; she wants her to go on to become a teacher. Shamika also wants to become a teacher.

Photographed By David Mercado, Bolivia

Lucia Mayta, 43, and her daughter Luz Cecilia, 12, pose for a photograph inside their bodega in La Paz.

Lucia studied until the fourth grade of primary school, and knows how to read and write and do basic math.

She runs a bodega, and the family live in a back room. Lucia hopes to build a house in the future. Luz Cecilia is in 7th grade and wants to be a singer.

Photographed by Kim Hong-Ji, South Korea

Kang Hyun-jeong, 43, and her daughter Yoo Ha-min, 11, pose for a photograph in the living room of their apartment in Seoul.

Kang Hyun-jeong has a job in accounts. She says that she started working in her senior year of high school, but she began a business degree in 1999 at the Korea National Open University because she wanted to study more.

She juggled work and classes and graduated eight years later in 2007. She hopes to get a masters degree when her children grow up.

Kang Hyun-jeong says her children are talented in the arts but she knows that it is difficult to make money in this field. She’s worried about that, but still wants to root for their dreams.

Her daughter Yoo Ha-min says she wants to be a designer or a painter when she grows up.

Photographed by Rick Wilking, United States

Denise Arthur, 52, and her daughter Linnaea Thibedeau, 13, pose for a photograph at their home near Blackhawk, Colorado.

Denise is a restoration ecologist. She has a Ph.D and finished her education at age 34. Her ambition as a child was to be an animal behaviorist like Jane Goodall.

Denise hopes her daughter Linnaea will be a biologist when she grows up. Linnaea would like to get a Ph.D and become a marine biologist.

Photographed by Mike Hutchings, South Africa

Thozama Kala, 30, and her daughter Mpho, 9, pose for a photograph in the kitchen of their home in Cape Town’s Langa township.

Thozama is studying office management after matriculating in 2002. She hopes that her daughter will become a doctor. Mpho says she wants to be a teacher.

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