AFGHANISTAN

Capitol - Kabul

Size – 652,230 sq km

Area Comparative – slightly smaller than Texas

Language - Afghan Persian or Dari (official) 50%, Pashto (official) 35%, Turkic languages (primarily Uzbek and Turkmen) 11%

Population – 29 million

Life Expectancy – 44.65

Annual Income/Person - $800

Exports - opium, fruits and nuts, handwoven carpets, wool, cotton, hides and pelts, precious and semi-precious gems

Religions - Sunni Muslim 80%, Shia Muslim 19%, other 1%

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

Afghanistan


The daily life of the average Afghani is brutal and almost primitive. Harsh weather and climate, grinding scarcities and poverty, ethnic tribal and religious strife, and an endless state of war has been a fact of life for generations and there is no prospect of any change soon.

Women and children suffer these conditions often without any vestige of relief. Girls are usually forced into marriage at a young age, there is virtually no education for girls or women, and property ownership for women is unlawful so loans for business enterprises for women are almost non-existent.

We must be discreet in describing our partners in Kabul as they are rooted in the culture while not being part of the destructive nature of the culture. Humanitarian work on the ground in Afghanistan is risky and dangerous and requires unique skills. Whether caring for Kabul’s own street children or child refugees from internationally organized relocation efforts into Kabul, our child centers are characterized by the touch of acceptance, family love and personal attention and kindness. Constant exposure to an unknown future such as Afghanistan faces is not for the weak hearted.

Sadly, one of the things Afghani children often need to be reintroduced to, is the experience of playing and having fun. Some of them have either never played games or have gone for so long without anything resembling fun that it needs to be learned. In the more remote rural areas of Afghanistan, where there are little or no strategic combat agendas vying for military or religious control, our partners identified remote tribal people who have been neglected in the food, medicine and educational distribution because they represent no tactical advantage to anyone. The smile on a malnourished child’s face, after going for long periods of time without proper nutrition is worth the days of travel it takes to reach them with bags of rice and grain, ten times over.