Posts tagged Afghanistan

Before arriving at the Charahi Qambar camp for internally displaced people, 16-year-old Agha LaLay had never attended school. He didn’t know how to read, didn’t know how to write, and his math skills were nonexistent.

That was five years ago. His family, like many of the families here, fled their home in Helmand province to escape constant fighting. They joined thousands of other people living in this camp.

Although relatively peaceful, life here is difficult, too. LaLay lives in a small cluster of mud-brick buildings with 19 relatives. There is still no running water, no toilet, and no electricity. Food is always in short supply. Most of the adults can’t read or write.

Read more.

via Building a future: Education for conflict-displaced children in Afghanistan (by UNICEF)

Afghanistan: 1,000 classrooms, a world of difference (by unicef)

Also see here:

Fifty-one schools in Afghanistan have undergone a makeover. The quality of the facilities, education and teaching has improved immensely – as have enrolment and retention of girls.

In 2001, when the Taliban was toppled from power, Afghanistan’s musical culture was left in ruins. Music gradually came back onto the streets and into people’s lives, but by 2009 there was still no orchestra capable of playing the Afghan national anthem.

In that year, renowned musicologist Dr Ahmad Sarmast returned from exile in Australia, and the Ministry of Education charged him with establishing the first National Institute of Music (ANIM). Based in what had been Kabul’s School of Fine Arts, ANIM got off to a slow start: the building was a ruin and there were virtually no instruments.

Dr Sarmast’s Music School follows ANIM’s progress over two years as, gradually, the school is repaired and made habitable. Fine instruments - many donated by foreign sponsors - flood in, and the school’s 150 pupils gradually learn to play to professional standards.

Perhaps, most importantly, ANIM offers hope to some of the country’s most deprived children; those snatching a meagre income from working on the streets who find - through music - a way to transform their lives.

(via Dr Sarmast’s Music School - Witness - Al Jazeera English)

An organisation in Afghanistan is trying to improve the lives of children there - by providing them with skateboards.

The organization behind Skateistan started 4 years ago, with a few boards and some interested kids, and it has grown. 

It has made a special effort to include those on the margins, like girls and the disabled.

via Skateboards help Afghan youth scrape by (by AlJazeeraEnglish)

KABUL — In a country where the recent past has unfolded like a war epic, officials think they have found a way to teach Afghan history without widening the fractures between long-quarreling ethnic and political groups: leave out the past four decades.
A series of government-issued textbooks funded by the United States and several foreign aid organizations do just that, pausing history in 1973. There is no mention of the Soviet war, the mujaheddin, the Taliban or the U.S. military presence. In their efforts to promote a single national identity, Afghan leaders have deemed their own history too controversial. (via In Afghanistan, a new approach to teaching history: Leave out the wars - The Washington Post)

KABUL — In a country where the recent past has unfolded like a war epic, officials think they have found a way to teach Afghan history without widening the fractures between long-quarreling ethnic and political groups: leave out the past four decades.

A series of government-issued textbooks funded by the United States and several foreign aid organizations do just that, pausing history in 1973. There is no mention of the Soviet war, the mujaheddin, the Taliban or the U.S. military presence. In their efforts to promote a single national identity, Afghan leaders have deemed their own history too controversial. (via In Afghanistan, a new approach to teaching history: Leave out the wars - The Washington Post)

Afghanistan’s state-run schools are experiencing a renaissance, with some reopening for the first time in nearly a decade. Acid attacks on girls, murdered teachers, bombings of classrooms - these are on the decline.

But the reason for these openings is not because Nato and Afghan forces are winning the war for security. Rather, it’s because the Afghan government, unable to bring security where needed, has begun to rely on secret agreements that give the Taliban greater say in the country’s education.

[KABUL, AFGHANISTAN] | The newly constructed Ghazi High School was inaugurated today [October 23, 2011] by both Afghan and U.S. government officials, including H.E. Minister of Education Ghulam Farooq Wardak and U.S. Deputy Ambassador James B. Cunningham. Funded through USAID’s Kabul Schools Program, 5,400 students will be able to study in the rebuilt school.


USAID created the Kabul Schools Program to support the Ministry of Education’s ambitious plans to expand quality and access to education, and when the program finishes in 2012, the Ministry will have the capacity to serve the educational needs of more than 12,000 boys and girls in greater Kabul City.

[AFGHANISTAN] Millions of girls have entered school in Afghanistan, since the fall of the Taliban in 2001. It is one of the few good news stories of the last nine years. However, the deteriorating security situation and the international community’s focus on stabilization and counter-insurgency rather than on long-term development means this good news story is in danger of turning bad. A new approach from both the Afghan government and donors is urgently required to hold onto the gains that have been made.
On World Teachers Day, three educators share their unique perspectives (via Back on Track).

On World Teachers Day, three educators share their unique perspectives (via Back on Track).