Hartmut Schwarzbach’s winning photo portrays 13-year-old Wenie, fishing plastic bottles out of the water in the Tondo district harbour in Manila. According to Unicef, every day Wenie fishes plastic bottles out of the polluted water to sell them to garbage recyclers for a dime.
“Although child labor is officially prohibited, many girls and boys from the slums have no other choice,” the agency says in a press release.
“Children as young as seven paddle across the filthy water of the harbor on bamboo rafts or refrigerator doors. They risk their health and often their lives when searching the contaminated water for anything of value in order to secure their existence.”