No, they’re not in training for I’m A Celebrity… they’re just going to school
- Children balance on a high wire 30 feet above a flowing river to get to school
- A bridge was destroyed more than two years ago by heavy rain
- The pupils must then walk a further seven miles through forest to get there
If you thought getting the kids to school was a chore, spare a thought for the parents of these children who have to balance on a high wire 30 feet above a flowing river to get to their class on time.
These determined Sumtra school pupils then walk a further seven miles through dense forest to their school in the town of Padang.
Instead of playing truant each day, 20 strong-willed pupils from Batu Busuk village on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia have to cross the local river like daredevils since the suspension bridge collapsed in heavy rain more than two years ago.
Daredevil route: Children use high wires to cross the river, 30 feet below, to get to school in Padang, Indonesia
Heavy rains: During the wet season, some children decide not to make the crossing for fear of falling in the flowing river below
Local photographer Igoy Fitra Yogi, 31, described how the brave children faced injury and possible death by drowning so they could get to school.
He said: ‘These children have to fight to pursue steel wire across the river to get to school.
‘They keep their balance by slowly walking on the wire, while swinging their arms.
Once across the river the children have to walk seven miles to reach their school
School days: This pupils starts the day with a different kind of test just trying to get to school in Sumatra
High wire: A young boy is determined to make it to school on time as he balances 30 feet above the moving river
Risky route: The children risk a 30 foot drop as they cross the river each morning before school in Pandang
‘The river is very swift, some children are afraid of falling in, and their uniforms get wet crossing the river.
‘When it’s the rainy season, many children decide not to go to school for fear of being swept away.
‘Sometimes a lot of parents accompany their children over the wire, so they are sure they get over safely.’
People are forced to cross the river this way due to the lack of road access to the village.
Indonesia is hit by natural disasters every year. In July, flash flooding hit West Sumatra, killing eight people and left more than 250 homeless. The worse hit areas included Batu Busuk and Padang.
In September, Padang suffered flooding after hours of heavy rain, killing four people and leaving dozens without homes.
The children have been forced into the balancing act after heavy rains destroyed a local bridge
Trepidation: Three schoolgirls wait to cross the river on the high wire after heavy rains destroyed the bridge more than two years ago
In the shallows: These two schoolgirls help each other in the shallows of the river on the way to school
The school run: A man carries his daughter through the water to take her to school because there is no road access to the village
To get to the other side: A schoolgirl wades through the flowing river as she makes her way to school from Batu Busuk village