Baljinnyam Erdenechuluun, 12, and Temuulen Khash-Erdene, 14, ride bikes on training rollers in Dalanzadgad, Umnugovi province, Mongolia. Selected children, with permission from their parents, started training for state-level cycling races in hopes of qualifying for national races.
Kathiravelu Loganathan throws a fishing net near the Ponnalai Bridge in Karainagar, Sri Lanka. Fishermen like Loganathan will catch fish in the evenings to sell on the beach and bring home to their families.
Tsogt-Ochir Damdin wraps flowers in plastic to prevent them from freezing in Erdenebulgan soum, Arkhangai province, Mongolia. Tsogt-Ochir says, “When my grandchildren are born, I plant a tree and assign it to each one of them.”
Sandeep Lama, Ram Magar and Raj Chhetri, from left, lay underground cables in Budhanilkantha, Kathmandu, Nepal. During the coronavirus lockdowns, workers for the Nepal Electricity Authority take advantage of the quiet streets to improve infrastructure.
Thirunavukarasu Lalithakala uses a fan to clean rice, which allows the grains to fall to the ground, in Malikaithidal, Mannar district, Sri Lanka. This process, called winnowing, allows flakes and dust to be discarded in the wind.
Oyunchimeg Lutbat paints flower details on the frame of a yurt, or ger, in Erdenebulgan soum, Arkhangai province, Mongolia. Oyunchimeg, who owns a woodworking business with her family, says, “We have been working at a wood factory from generation to generation, and now we are making everything that can be made of wood.”
Ariunjargal Sainbuyan gives Khorolmaa Urtnasan the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine in Dalanzadgad, the capital of Umnugovi province, Mongolia. According to its website, the province has one of the highest vaccination rates in the country.
Uranchimeg Oyunchimeg paints a bench in a shopping district in Erdenet city, Orkhon province, Mongolia. Uranchimeg, who manages this retail area, says, “After the [coronavirus] lockdown is over, everyone will be back to work. I believe that people who come to our shopping street at that time would cheer up and feel happy seeing the colorful, fresh street.”
A mobile team tests Bayaraa Jambaltseren for the coronavirus as others in line maintain social distancing in Dalanzadgad, Umnugovi province, Mongolia. As the number of coronavirus infections increased, Umnugovi province organized a surveillance measure called “One Family, One Test.”
Ariunzaya Enkhbayar heats thread while making soutache earrings during her lunch break in Erdenebulgan soum, Arkhangai province, Mongolia. Ariunzaya, who works full time for a government organization, says, “Working on soutache craft like this and sewing daalin [snuff bags] serve as meditation for me.”
Sathiyananthan Amirthambigai, right, pours ghee and grains into a fire during a yajna, a Hindu ritual, as priests look on at the Sekarasasekara Pillaiyar Temple in Inu, Jaffna, Sri Lanka. The yajna is performed in the name of Ganapati Omam for the welfare of the village and to protect its people from the effects of the coronavirus.
Sunita Adhikari holds her 7-month-old daughter, Swastika Adhikari, while Shanta Rai, a health care worker, administers medicine at Shankha Park in Kathmandu, Nepal. The government provides free vitamin A tablets and other medicine to children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years to improve health and decrease child mortality.
Gantulga Ankhaa, who is temporarily repairing bikes to earn an income, adjusts a bicycle rim in Erdenet city, Orkhon province, Mongolia. Since automobile traffic is suspended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, more people are riding bicycles to work. “Instead of sitting idly at home doing nothing just because the work is suspended,” Gantulga says, “it is important for a young person to keenly observe and be aware of what could be done given the circumstances of any given time, to be able to identify opportunities and to use them properly.”
Muthiah Kuganeswaran weaves a box made of palm leaves in the Kokkuvil area of Jaffna, Sri Lanka. Kuganeswaran, who has been in business for more than 40 years, says there is a labor shortage for making palm boxes, which are used for agricultural and domestic purposes.
Batjargal Choijiljav carves a wooden horse at his home in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Batjargal, who has carved 14,400 wooden horses over his 25-year sculpting career, says a single mistake would be irreversible and make the sculpture worthless.
Lkhagvasuren Ulamnemekh pours candle wax into a mold after adding color and essential oil at her home in Mongolia’s Arkhangai province. Lkhagvasuren, who is a teacher, began making body scrubs, bath bombs, eco-soaps and other items during the coronavirus lockdown.
Ramalingam Manoharan welds a curved iron roof for a well in Manipay, a town in Jaffna, Sri Lanka. Manoharan has worked with iron for the past four years, and he earns between 1,500 and 2,000 Sri Lankan rupees ($8 to $10) per day.
Yeshe Thinley, a 16-year-old monk, prepares an altar for worship at Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery in Boudha, Nepal. The altar holds a kudung, the body of a religious teacher believed to be sacred after they pass away. Kyabje Chokling Rinpoche died in December 2020, and his kudung will be kept in the monastery for one year so his pupils and disciples can pay their last respects.
Sancha Maya Limbu cleans the walls of the Bhimsen temple amid reconstruction work at Patan Durbar Square in Lalitpur, Nepal. The temple was destroyed in the April 2015 earthquake. Reconstruction began in 2019 but was temporarily halted in 2020 due to COVID-19.