The fall of Kabul on 15 August 2021 brought the biggest challenges Street Child has faced in our 25 years of operations in Afghanistan. Over the last year, there has been dramatic economic suffering and we've witnessed the significant narrowing of space for women in society.
In spite of these challenges, we have sustained, and expanded, our reach by keeping over 100,000 girls and boys safe, in school, and learning. We have increased our geographic footprint from five to 15 provinces – going where others won’t – to provide humanitarian relief and response, where and when needed. Our 1,800-strong team is now working on 11 active projects alongside our 6 local partner organizations.
We can and will do more—but we need your help.
Street Child is now working in 15 different provinces across Afghanistan, going where others won’t to provide humanitarian relief and response whenever it is needed.
We now run 13% of all community-based education centers across the country.
Street Child is focusing on food distribution so that vulnerable families can meet their basic needs. Through an Afghanistan Humanitarian Fund (UN) project, we support 2,373 families (or 14,268 individuals) in Zabul with cash for food packages that feed their families for 6 months.
In Kabul, we provide hygiene, food, and protection services to 4,660 children and caregivers through a 6-month UNICEF project. In Wardak province, we are also actively improving household food security and increasing resilience to upcoming and unexpected shocks by covering 75% of the cost of food needed for an average seven-person family across 1,560 households. This supports more than 10,000 people. This cash for food support will cover six-months of rations and will allow them to survive the harsh winter in the central highlands.
Our community-based education centers are run in spaces within the communities themselves, so that children do not have to walk through a conflict zone to reach the nearest school. Street Child offers an accelerated learning program for over-age children, allowing them to catch up by covering and completing two years of curricular content in one year.
Community-based learning centers provide additional support too: aides for children with disabilities, dignity kits for girls (including menstrual hygiene management), drinking water and handwashing facilities. They are outfitted with resources like warm clothes, blankets, and firewood during the colder winter months. In 2022-23, more than 10% of learners in community-based classes in Afghanistan were attending Street Child-run classes.
Street Child is the only organization using tablets as a tool to support our teachers’ progress and improve their teaching approach. They are being used in teacher training sessions to address gaps or areas of improvement.
This approach has proven effective for teacher training, and subsequently, students’ learning. Although 75% of our teachers have less than one year of teaching experience, since Street Child’s training they have been able to produce excellent results as the literacy levels of their students have visibly improved. Before Street Child began working in Zabul and Uruzgan Provinces, average fluency rates were between weak or average, but an assessment by an external agency in 2022 showed that 60-75% of learners in Street Child’s classes demonstrate acceptable or desirable fluency rates - a big improvement.
Afghanistan is the only country in the world denying education on the basis of gender.
We’re proud to report that 49% of children in Street Child community-based learning centers are girls. To make this possible, our local teams work closely with community leaders, and caregivers to build trust, buy-in and support for elementary education for all children.
Street Child has also been focusing on training female teachers where possible. In some areas such as Baghlan and Bamyan, despite the restrictions on female employment our percentage of female teachers is 60%.
Street Child runs three Protection and Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Services (MHPSS) programs, supporting more than 64,000+ direct and indirect project participants across ten provinces.
Keeping children safe is central to everything we do; mental health is as important as physical health, and in a context like Afghanistan, it is lifesaving and life-sustaining. Our programs work to alleviate trauma, provide coping strategies and promote resilience through collaborative community initiatives to improve well-being and social cohesion, and encourage healing within the community.
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