The Unforgettable Kids of Afghanistan
7 March, 2022 by
The Unforgettable Kids of Afghanistan
Alireza Tahsini

Child Foundation is fighting hunger, treating childhood illness, and getting education support to more and more children. 

Fighting Hunger 

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As of the most recent reports in February 2022, hunger is rampant in Afghanistan. As the new government took over, financial and other systems collapsed. But there is good news. Child Foundation is re-establishing financial pathways to support humanitarian aid and sponsorship stipends to ensure children can attend school. 

In 2021, we successfully delivered large food packages to 400 of our sponsored children’s families. More food packages are being prepared now, thanks to donations from the Afghan Crisis Fund. However, the UN reports that around 23 million people face extreme hunger, so our efforts are for even more than our sponsored children. 

And so we are meeting needs where we find them. Child Foundation Afghanistan has networked with 30+ bakeries in Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif to provide freshly baked bread for Afghan families. In Mazar-e Sharif, loaves will be given to sponsored and unsponsored families in need so there is no waste and we can fight hunger across the community. 40,000+ freshly baked barbari bread loaves have already been delivered, 5-8 loaves per family… but we are just getting started. See our Bring Bread to Afghanistan Campaign in action. This campaign is vital; it supplements the monthly support flowing to our sponsored children and sustains other families who may otherwise have nowhere else to turn.

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Treating Illness 

The blood disorder thalassemia is not uncommon among Afghanistan’s children, and it can be deadly. Left untreated, children are unlikely to see their fifth birthday. The clinic provides life-saving treatment to any child living with the blood disease, including blood transfusions, medication to manage their iron levels, and surgery when it can be coordinated in Kabul. The Child Foundation-funded Thalassemia Clinic in Mazar-e-Sharif Hospital serves more children than ever. As surrounding hospitals and clinics turn away patients for lack of resources or staff, we are seeing a 50% daily increase in the number of children urgently needing care. 

Against the odds, the clinic is securing enough medication to help children manage their iron levels and not risk fatal iron overload. Additionally, community members, including the Taliban, are reported to be generously donating blood which is massively crucial for regular blood transfusions.  

The clinic needs to urgently cover the costs of this medication and more beds, personnel, and other supplies. The clinic’s basic operational costs are nearly $1,500 a month while providing a month’s worth of medication to our children is an additional $3,450. Learn more and join us with a gift to the clinic. 


Supporting Education 

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After great uncertainty, our monthly sponsorship support to children is getting through, and you can now sponsor an Afghan child! Hundreds of generous people sponsor our almost 800 Afghan children with monthly giving that pays for school tuition, school supplies, and basic family needs. Our goal is to help tip the financial scale toward children staying in school. Child Foundation faced a slowdown due to the government transition and ensuing crisis, including security concerns and a severely weakened financial system. However, hard work and patience have won out! Backlog support is getting to the children at a critical time.  

Also very exciting is the news that our sponsored girls are still in school. Young adult women in Mazar-e Sharif can go to university. Still, the national policy is unclear, so we are seeing uneven access in Mazar-e Sharif compared to Kabul. In Kabul, girls in public schools can only attend through 6th grade. Fortunately, all our girls in both Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif can attend school because of the type of school or level they attend.   

Thankfully, social workers are now more freely moving about in local communities to visit and check in with families about their needs and students’ progress in school as the term ends. The next school year begins in March 2022, just before Nowruz.  

Our Mazar-e Sharif office is now open for female and male staff working in newly modified arrangements. While our Kabul office is not yet open again, staff are working remotely. 

The need in Afghanistan grows day by day. We are so grateful for our hardworking staff and dedicated Child Foundation family, who continues to support our outstanding students and their families. We know that Afghanistan’s banking system and society are opening back up, but there is still a long way to go.  

You can support our continued efforts in Afghanistan in so many ways. 

The Unforgettable Kids of Afghanistan
Alireza Tahsini 7 March, 2022
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