From left, Rasalingam Mohanraj, Rasarathinam Vinotharan and Sagadevan Saruksan dig a well with a machine in Cheddikulam, Vavuniya, Sri Lanka. Since the groundwater level is low, workers dig borewells at a depth of 100 feet as an alternative to ordinary wells for agricultural needs.
Balgantseren Dashzegve, left, and Khosbayar Oyunbileg sing at an environmental conservation event in Dalanzadgad, Umnugovi province, Mongolia. World Wildlife Fund Mongolia launched the Great Gobi 6 initiative in 2016 to protect Gobi animals and their habitat.
Kanthasamy Kugasanth paints cement sculptures in Pandatharippu, Jaffna, Sri Lanka. Kugasanth, who has worked as a painter for over two years, says his employment has been affected by lockdowns to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Odonchimeg Dashbal burns dried manure to fumigate her ger and courtyard in Dalanzadgad, Umnugovi province, Mongolia. Historically, many Mongols believed dried cow and horse manure had disinfectant properties. When coronavirus infections spiked, Umnugovi residents advocated for the practice on Facebook.
Yoganathan Viththakan makes handicrafts with coconut shells in Neerveli, Jaffna, Sri Lanka. Vithagan says he promotes his business through Facebook and exports his handicrafts to Canada and Switzerland.
Altanchimeg Dorjnyam softens and tans a sheepskin with a wooden stick called a “khedreg” in Bayandalai, Umnugovi province, Mongolia. As winter sets in, Altanchimeg will use the prepared skin as part of a “deel,” a traditional Mongolian garment, that she will sew for her son.
Manokaran Chandrakala weaves a blanket at a handloom training center in Cheddikulam, Vavuniya district, Sri Lanka. The center, run by the Department of Industries, trains young women to make such goods as garments, towels and blankets in an effort to provide employment opportunities and to boost production in rural areas.
Nemekhnyam Buyantogtokh peels off the stencil of a book title at a literacy center in Erdenet, Orkhon province, Mongolia. The province’s Artist Association and Book Center built a free library, open to everyone, to encourage reading.
Muthu Velumani adjusts his field’s boundaries in Cheddikulam, Vavuniya, Sri Lanka. Due to the monsoon in the northern part of the country, he had to reconstruct his paddy before he could sow the field.
Krishna Shyam Prajapati makes clay lamps for the Tihar festival in Bhaktapur, Nepal. During the five-day Hindu festival, people decorate their homes, shops and offices, and light the lamps to welcome Laxmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity.
Gansukh Sharav marks measurements on a horn to craft a traditional composite bow, made from cow horns and cattle tendon, in Murun, Khuvsgul province, Mongolia. Gansukh says his goal is to train as many people as possible and pass archery, a national sport, on to the next generation.
Sarita Lama shades a thanka, a Tibetan painting, before adding 24-karat gold in Bhaktapur, Nepal. Five artists will work on this painting for about seven months using natural pigments, made from plants and stones, which last for centuries.
Sinnathamby Sinnapillai, left, and Paramanandar Vallikodi weave coconut leaves to fence their house in Kodikamam, Jaffna, Sri Lanka. In rural areas, where cement walls are hard to find, residents will often replace their coconut leaf fences twice a year.
Sandeep Bhandari visits houses to conduct COVID-19 tests in Chapal Kharkana, Kathmandu, Nepal. He says during the second coronavirus wave he conducted at least 50 tests a day, four to five times more than usual.
Girls deliver letters to the governor at a government building in Dalanzadgad, Umnugovi province, Mongolia. The province organized a “Powerful Girls” day to celebrate International Day of the Girl Child, when girls learn about their rights, health and self-defense.
Ravdan Gonchigdavaa braids a whip from thin strips of processed goatskin in Murun, Khuvsgul province, Mongolia. Ravdan makes stirrup straps, cinches and saddle girths out of discarded hides, and he hopes to pass the forgotten traditional methods on to his children.
From left, Pasith Pasarath, bottom, Jeyanthan Maheesan, top, and Immanuel Anthonithas collect straw in Adampan, Mannar district, Sri Lanka. The farmers will store the straw to feed cows during the upcoming rainy season.
Anran Yogarasa Sakayapuspam packs lime paste in Periyavilan, Jaffna, Sri Lanka. The paste, a mixture of calcium oxide and water, is a household ingredient and is often combined with betel nut to produce a popular stimulant.
Dhanabalasingam Gunanathan, left, and Erampu Sivanesarasa extract fish from a net at Kakkaithivu, Jaffna, Sri Lanka. Sivanesarasa says since the sea mother gives them great wealth, the coronavirus does not affect his business.
Emergency rescue personnel and firefighters extinguish a fire in Erdenebulgan, Arkhangai province, Mongolia. They conducted the 10-day Khangai-21 Disaster Response Exercise in response to increasing seismic activity.