Laid out on a wooden panel in the backyard of an MSF health facility in Kutupalong refugee camp, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, a bamboo-cane tree is taking shape.
Busy hands work away at the tree, as health staff move between the buildings and banana palms in the background. Around the tree, a group of makers pass bamboo weaving strips between them. They turn the strips on their side, layer and bend them into smooth curves, then bind them together with thinner strips.
The form of the tree swells. It is puffy, cloud-like, brimming with the possibility of shade for a person who might sit underneath it. It is a banyan—a type of tree well known to Nurus Safar and Nuru Salam, two of the makers and Rohingya weavers.