Since the late 1960s, the flourishing economy of Iran had been attracting many Afghan labourers. Following the political upheavals in the mid 1970s in Afghanistan, the massive influx of Afghan labourers to Iran (most of them refugees) was so large that this group comprised the majority of labourers in the Iranian construction sector. By the mid 1980s there were about 2 to 3 million Afghanis.
Unfortunately, there has been no major study of the working and living conditions of this huge migrant community, either within or outside Iran. In order to have a record of the life and conditions of these labourers, the International Institute of Social History decided to launch a project that depicts the everyday life of this group. Jamshid, the Iranian photographer who took some 600 photographs, endeavoured to depict an all-inclusive picture of this community, which includes their everyday life from early morning to late evening.
All photos were made by Jamshid in Qom (Iran), 2001.