Training in computers and English helps women to aim for a brighter future
20 DECEMBER 2011 | TAKHAR, AFGHANISTAN
USAID is strengthening the capacity of women-focused civil-society organizations to contribute to the social, economic, and political development of women throughout Afghanistan.
Women and girls in the Taloqan District of Takhar Province suffer from poverty and unemployment. “Fifty women came to me the other day asking for some social or economic activities. They have nothing,” says Fazila, director of the Afghan Women Rehabilitation and Skills Development Association.
Fazila established the association in 2000 to challenge the existing problems within her community by providing opportunities for women. During the past decade, she has implemented a number of projects for women, mostly funded by USAID.
With support from a new USAID project that supports women across the country, Fazila rented a house to facilitate training for 40 women and girls in computer use and English literacy.
With 30 years of experience in education, Fazila believes that only educated women can campaign for their rights and change their conditions. “I am lucky to have the support of my husband. Most women do not,” says Fazila, whose husband helps her in running the Association. “We were both teachers, and teachers help others out of darkness,” said her husband.
Fazila also provides space for two other associations who are leading other activities for village women. “I had spare rooms in the building so I decided to let other women use them. I don’t ask them for payment,” said Fazila. The rented house is buzzing with life and activity. Women and girls eagerly rush in and out, waiting for classes to begin and sharing laughs together. The house is quickly becoming a women’s institute and a community network for motivated women.
Through this grant, the association helped 21 women to gain permanent employment in governmental and non-governmental organizations. Fazila continues to provide training for 39 women in English and computer skills. She has also put a number of women’s groups in touch with donors and helps women in rural areas to apply for grants in animal husbandry and embroidery. She hopes to expand these activities to women throughout the province.
Last updated: January 12, 2015