With years of experience living and working in Afghanistan, Phil Sparrow doubted that women’s Self-Help Groups could cross the cultural familial bounds and succeed in this context. Happy to be proven wrong, he recently visited groups which are not only flourishing, but seeking broader social change.
I visited Mazar-i-Sharif in Northern Afghanistan recently. We had lived in Mazar for some years under the Taliban, as TEAR Fieldworkers, and the chance to visit again and reconnect with some old friends and see some new work was one I took up with glee. That’s right, I was gleeful, and you don’t…
The Hebrew name Hagar means “one who flees” or “one who seeks refuge”. The biblical story of Hagar and her son, Ishmael, tells the story of women and children who are exploited, trafficked, disabled, and rejected.
In Afghanistan, there are many “Hagars”. TEAR’s partner organisation, Hagar, is working with these vulnerable women and children, many who are survivors of family violence, trafficking and human rights abuse. Staff members are guided by the story of Hagar, asking: “Who has been cast out? Who is without hope? Whose cries are not being heard?”
TEAR supports Hagar’s Empowering Women…
Afghan women. In the news media, they are most often pictured clothed from head to toe in bright blue burqas. Vision obscured by mesh grilles, so you can’t even see their eyes. Begging on the street. Wailing at the loss of yet another child, a husband, a parent. Or sitting in mute despair at the site of a suicide bomb.
But there are other images of Afghan women, less commonly seen. Women marching to mark International Women’s Day. Women speaking up for their rights using poetry, the written word and the internet. Women taking their place in the National Parliament, or taking roles in the…
The birth of a baby is meant to be a time of joy and excitement, but for many women living in Afghanistan it’s a time of great uncertainty and risk. Here, one in eight mothers die while giving birth, usually in their homes and often in remote areas. In the lead up to the birth, only 16% of women have access to a trained health care practitioner.
The Birth Life Saving Skills (BLiSS) program, developed by TEAR’s partner Operation Mercy, is helping to improve these statistics, and make a real difference in the lives of mothers and babies in Afghanistan. BLiSS is a health education program that…
Poor quality water can lead to health issues and illness that prevents people from living a full life, participating in activities education and earning a living.
Having safe water makes a huge difference to communities living in poverty overseas, enabling them to lead happier and healthier lives.
Simple changes improve health in Afghanistan
The Afghanistan we hear about in the news is one of conflict and insecurity, but for the people living there, there is more to the story. Most are struggling with basic issues like finding clean water to drink or having access to adequate…
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