Charity No. 1130232
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Afghanistan Today

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What does Afghanistan look like today?

Life in Kabul

Steep hills and tiny houses dressed in bright colours – Kabul is a city of great beauty. After more than 40 years of war, Afghans’ lives have become entangled with those of bullet-bitten house walls.

But, despite decades of violence, the people of Kabul are lively, with a joie de vivre that gives the city an air of unmistakable vibrancy. The smell of sizzling grills and steamy Kabuli pulao outside Kabul’s canteens invade the streets on spring days.

Life never stops.

An environment favourable for micro-businesses

Most Afghans start their morning with prayer before going on with their busy lives. Widowed mothers go to work to support families of four or five children on average.

A micro-economy of independent businessmen and women also has its home in Kabul. The city buzzes with customer-merchant relationships. Shop owners open their doors to customers every day.

However, the hardships of the poor are deeply intertwined with the bustle of daily life. The busy traffic in the city hides disabled beggars, women, children, and men affected by the war, hovering between cars and busy passengers to survive yet another day.

At Aryana Aid, we have programmes that aim to empower these people, so they can become independent and open their own micro-businesses. From long-term skills programmes for widows to orphan sponsorships, our projects are helping bridge the gap of poverty in Afghanistan.

Re-building Afghan villages

Rural areas in Afghanistan used to rely heavily on agriculture. Family life was essential in maintaining the family’s cultures, so the bigger the family, the more work force available. Nowadays, after consecutive years of drought and war consequences, the countryside struggles with famine-like conditions.

Women, girls, and men can be seen in colourful shirts working the field side by side. However, this comes at a cost sometimes. Children have to skip school to help the household.

Another issue is the opium production in Afghanistan. Sadly, today, Afghan villagers are more likely to make a living by producing and distributing opium than cultivating rice or wheat.

We can avoid this by installing more water pumps and donating food to poor families in small Afghan villages. These families rely heavily on water supplies for agriculture and only 13% of Afghans have access to clean water.

Access to water does not only help restore the agricultural landscape, but it also improves the lives of children like 12-year-old Habiba from Ghazni. Thanks to Aryana Aid, she is now free to attend school instead of having to spend tiring hours in search for clean water every day.

What is the future of children?

In a country depleted of resources, many war widows are forced to send their children to work on the street or beg for food. This not only takes away their chance at a normal childhood, but also their right to education.

Children flying kites on abrupt hill slopes are running through the most heavily mined country in the world. Random explosions have left thousands disabled. Afghanistan is, indeed, one of the most dangerous places for children.

In spite of it all, there is great hope for their future. A solid education system is the answer to helping them stay away from begging and working from an early age. There has been great progress since 2001:

  • the number of children enrolled in General Education (grades 1-12) has risen by almost nine times and 39% of them are girls.
  • the number of schools increased from 3,400 to 16,400.

We can do so much more to give these children a fair chance in life. Those left disabled cannot afford wheelchairs, so they have to give up their dreams of going to school and becoming someone in life. The first step is to help them regain their mobility.

The second step is to empower their families, so they can sustain their children’s education financially. Let’s make a change today.

Muslims in Afghanistan

Our beloved Prophet (pbuh) said: “Be mindful of Allah, and Allah will protect you. Be mindful of Allah, and you will find Him in front of you. If you (need to) ask, ask of Allah; and if you seek help, seek help from Allah. Know that even if the Nation (or the whole community) were to gather together to benefit you with something, they would not benefit you with anything except that which Allah has already recorded for you…” [Al-Tirmidhi].

Thousands of Muslims in Afghanistan do not have the safety and luxury to practice their faith with ease. Many were left with no option but to escape the country and find refuge somewhere else. However, there is much to learn from how these people dedicate time for prayer each day, remain faithful to Allah (swt) and manage to keep Sawm (fast) even when their resources are so scarce.

By distributing food packs to the poor and providing emergency shelter, we can create a safer worship space for them.

Afghanistan is slowly changing. But this is only the beginning.

This is what it looks like today:

  • Almost 2 million widows;
  • Over 850, 000 disabled;
  • 70% illiteracy rate;
  • 40% of children under 5 are growth stunted;
  • 2nd highest maternal mortality rate in the world.

The numbers are far from ideal, but a lot of progress has been made over the past years.

Aryana Aid have been making an impact in Afghanistan since 2001. We are a volunteer led charity working with local Afghan communities to deliver emergency aid and long-term sustainability through our orphan sponsorship, widow skills training, and water and electricity projects.

We have all witnessed injustice first-hand. Now, we use our personal insight into the culture and these local communities to offer help where most needed. Recently, Aryana Aid provided sponsorship to 1560 orphans and 20 widows; 350 wheelchairs to Afghan disabled children; medical aid supplies for 5470 patients; emergency shelters for 65 refugee families.

Help us bring solace and hope to the needy in Afghanistan. Find out more and donate to our causes.


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