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Transforming Lives

Psychiatrist Dr Kos (left) with Aziza Eshani, one of the counselors she trained to provide support to bereaved families

After two of her children were killed in a Taliban attack in Kabul, a distraught Rihilla tried to commit suicide. She tried to hang herself; took a drug overdose; slit her wrists. Her vigilant family thwarted each suicide attempt but Rihilla’s distress remained acute. “I kept wondering how much pain my sons felt (when they died),” she says, “once, I put my hand in the oven and another time in the fire, to feel how they suffered.”

Bashar at a World Food Program distribution point in Lashkargah

Bashar fled his village in the east of volatile Helmand province after two of his sons were killed in the fighting. Like thousands of other people, the 70-year-old farmer and his family headed to the provincial capital Lashkargah. There, they received help from the World Food Progam (WFP), USAID and other agencies. But Bashar worries about feeding his wife and 13 children. “I have a large family. This food will last us only a short time. We have nothing,” he says.

A volunteer tells a housewife about civic duties and governance

It took just one flyer to get Leyaqat Khan thinking about his rights and responsibilities as a citizen and what he could reasonably expect from the municipal authorities in Jalalabad. His was one of 800 households the city targeted by 50 young volunteers to raise public awareness about local government.

‘Don’t ignore our abilities, don’t look at us as weak people’ - Ahmad Shah Aazami, one of the founders of the Community Center f

At 26, Ahmad Shah Aazami thought his life was over. A landmine had blown off both his arms and the young man felt despondent and helpless.

Soccer teams from two different parts of Helmand province pose for a ‘family’ photo after playing each other

When Helmand in southern Afghanistan organized a sports tournament to give young people the chance to test themselves and learn teamwork, it was a first for the province.


Last updated: January 16, 2015

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