Where we work

Afghanistan

Over the past 6 months Hagar has been implementing it’s Emergency Response Program in Afghanistan. Here is an update on the work so far.

Food Aid

The World Food Programme believes that approximately 23 million people in Afghanistan (about half of the population) are not consuming enough food.* Acute malnutrition is above emergency levels in 25 out of the 34 provinces, with the situation expected to worsen.  

 Following the arrival of the new Government, the Hagar Team on the ground visited multiple camps for Internally Displaced People (IDP) to evaluate the unfolding situation. Those in these camps had often fled their homes or were now unable to afford rent. They found that most of the people in these camps were women (often widowed), children and those with disabilities. There were some families in these camps who had no source of income and were struggling to feed their children, often living in tents or other makeshift structures. Overall, Hagar staff described the conditions of these camps as “very bad,” with the lives of women and children being in grave danger.  

Supporting vulnerable communities in Afghanistan since 2008, our Hagar Afghanistan team jumped into action right after the change of Government in August 2021 and conducted a series of rapid needs assessments to ascertain the level of needs on the ground and where Hagar could possibly make the greatest impact. The Afghanistan team created an assessment criteria and worked to identify and select the neediest households both in these camps and in their other networks. When everything was ready, these households were then invited to Hagar food distribution events to receive a food hamper. To date, 5,768 of the most vulnerable people in Afghanistan have benefitted from Hagar’s distribution of food hampers. 

Words cannot describe the emotions of those receiving a food hamper. Khadija, a recipient of a food hamper, described to Hagar staff how this support came at a critical time for her family. 

“My name is Khadija. I am from Dasht-e-Barchi in Kabul province. We are six people in our family including me, my husband, two daughters and two sons. My husband is disabled and can’t do anything. And I am the sole breadwinner of the family. Of my children, two are disabled and I bear a lot of problems in my family. I live with my family in a rented house. I can barely make ends meet. In the past, I used to embroider before the fall of the government, which used to bring me some income, but now that work has come to a standstill. For now, Hagar’s help is a solution to some of our domestic problems. I hope Hagar can continue the food aid support because I do not have any other option to provide food for my family.” 

Khadija is just one out of the hundreds of households who are grateful to Hagar and our donors. Because of the generosity of our donors around the world, Hagar has been able to ensure that they have a source of food at a time when some of them would have gone hungry and starved.

Winter Support

Winter in Afghanistan is harsh. Temperatures can drop below freezing point and snow fall can be severe. As winter began again this year, there were concerns globally about how the vulnerable people in Afghanistan are going to fare especially those in IDP camps and/or with no income to pay for heating. Some news agencies have reported that families are having to choose between food and heat*. 

However, because of all of our wonderful supporters around the globe, Hagar has been able to provide warm blankets, clothing and children’s shoes to vulnerable families (the majority of which are living in camps for Internally Displaced People). Approximately 7752 people have benefitted from this winter support. Such supplies could not be given at a more crucial time and pictured below are some of the distribution events underway. 

As part of their winter support initiative, Hagar has made sure that the children attending the Hagar Child Friendly Spaces in IDP camps have what they need to stay warm this winter. The following is a testimony from a teacher in one of these spaces about how winter support from Hagar has profoundly impacted the lives of her students:  

Winter in Afghanistan is harsh. Temperatures can drop below freezing point and snow fall can be severe. As winter began again this year, there were concerns globally about how the vulnerable people in Afghanistan are going to fare especially those in IDP camps and/or with no income to pay for heating. Some news agencies have reported that families are having to choose between food and heat.

However, because of all of our wonderful supporters around the globe, Hagar has been able to provide warm blankets, clothing and children’s shoes to vulnerable families (the majority of which are living in camps for Internally Displaced People). Approximately 7752 people have benefitted from this winter support. Such supplies could not be given at a more crucial time and pictured below are some of the distribution events underway.

Child Friendly Spaces

Not only have our supporters helped provide food hampers and essential winter items, but the Hagar team in Afghanistan have also been able to create child friendly spaces inside the camps for Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) with 1860 children and family members benefitting from this initiative. These spaces have provided the children in these camps a space to be kids; a space to learn, receive some education and enjoy some rare recreation activities.  

 When visiting the IDP camps last year, Hagar found that the majority of the children living in these areas were not attending school. Instead, they were working to help provide for their families through activities such as polishing shoes, begging and collecting garbage from the streets.  

 Because of the generous financial support of our supporters around the globe, the Hagar team were able to respond to this situation and begin the process of creating spaces where children could both learn and play. Hagar staff did the following: 

  • Identified children in IDP camps who either had no easy access to a school, had families who were hesitant to send them to school or whose age was limiting their access to education 
  • Identified six safe spaces in the IDP camps where classes and activities for children could start 
  • Met with parents/or caretakers of the children Hagar wanted to invite along to raise awareness about the importance of their child having access to education and literacy 
  • Secured essential support from the Ministry of Education  
  • Appointed teachers for the classes, with Hagar staff then running a 2-day workshop with them to give them a better understanding of the project and Hagar’s policies 
  • Purchased stationary from a suitable vendor and equipped all of the classes with the right resources  

 On the 28th of November classes began, with 330 students participating and beginning to follow a standard primary school level curriculum. In addition to their education, staff also keep an eye on the children’s physical and mental health, with psychosocial counseling being provided, in partnership with other NGOs. Our colleagues on the ground have reported that these child-friendly spaces have been a huge success with a significant impact being noticed in both the kids AND their parents! To each of 330 students participating and the 1,860 children and families benefitting from the care and educational support, this intervention represent an opportunity that they never would have had if it wasn’t for Hagar and our supporters.  

“I am Abdul Basit… In my father’s family, everyone was qualified and educated only my father remained uneducated. Which had a devastating effect on our family. My father did not have a special job and always worked as a laborer. And in the current government change, he remained jobless and we did not have any means of income. In that case, I would have to skip school and work to feed my family. With this, all my hopes and aspirations were shattered.  

A friend told me that the Hagar organization is opening a basic education class in the Dak area botkhak for children interested in education and haven’t taught much at all. I told myself that now is the time to fulfil my dream of education. I quickly joined the class and started studying.thanks to Hagar International Foundation for making a positive difference in my life..” 

We are determined to continue to support the Afghan people. You can help us as we do this by giving today.

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By partnering with Hagar, you’re supporting survivors to heal from the trauma of severe abuse. Our work is dependent on charitable giving by people like you.

Help us transform lives

Donate now

By partnering with Hagar, you’re supporting survivors to heal from the trauma of severe abuse. Our work is dependent on charitable giving by people like you.

Help us transform lives

Donate now

By partnering with Hagar, you’re supporting survivors to heal from the trauma of severe abuse. Our work is dependent on charitable giving by people like you.

Help us transform lives

Donate now

By partnering with Hagar, you’re supporting survivors to heal from the trauma of severe abuse. Our work is dependent on charitable giving by people like you.

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