Afghan Institute of Learning

The Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) works to empower all Afghans who are needy, especially women and children, providing them the knowledge and skills to care for themselves. AIL is expanding access to quality education and healthcare through community based programming, enabling communities to develop the capacity of their people. The goal is to create a foundation of quality education and health systems throughout Afghanistan which meet the needs of local people now and in the future. AIL was founded by an Afghan woman and is run by women, reaching thousands each year through health facilities, educational centers and training programs.
Nov 25, 2014

Education means hope!

AIL started in the Afghan refugee camps of Pakistan, where Dr. Yacoobi  saw the plight of the people who were dropping behind in education, losing skills and were unhealthy and lacking hope. She founded AIL to address these problems and sees education as the key to a changed future for people.

17 years later AIL is still working, helping refugees and also those back in the homeland. In 2014, AIL has one Learning Center (LC) in Pakistan and supports 3 schools. At the LC there are between 260 and 176 students in any given month (202-123 female). There are 7 classes in Arabic, literacy, English and sewing and 4 teachers. The supported schools have between 850 and 1,437 students as well as a preschool for a dozen children. School restarted in early September following the summer break. AIL staff organized a short technique seminar and a one day workshop on lesson planning, the role of the teacher and teaching different age groups.  Teaching staff were able to update their skills for the new school year. In August, during the summer recess, 40 people attended an in depth teaching technique seminar. All this training is part of AIL’s program philosophy of providing high quality trained teachers and continuing to support them when they are working.

Your support for Afghan refugees is much appreciated. We have included Creating Hope International’s newsletter which contains information on AIL’s work. We hope that you will take a moment to read through it.

Nov 25, 2014

17,000 Educated!!

AIL Sewing Students
AIL Sewing Students

Dear Friends,

Thank you for supporting the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL)! This year has been fantastic for AIL's Learning Centers (LCs), with nearly 17,000 women and girls coming through the doors of AIL’s centers for classes in subjects such as, English, math, science, Arabic, tailoring, crochet, computers and more. This summer and fall were a tumultuous time in Afghanistan, but we are happy to say that despite the instability, all of the LCs remain open. In addition, the AIL office in Herat has begun supporting three new Learning Centers.

Our staff recently spoke with a 24 year-old woman named Zahra who is taking classes at one LC in Herat Province. Zahra came to the center to enroll her children in classes and saw that there were many women her age having lessons. She spoke with the women who told her that the center offered great classes for women. Her husband was against the idea at first, but she enrolled anyway. They had many disagreements about her taking lessons, but Zahra’s husband was soon convinced that the classes were a good idea after the young woman learned to sew and was able to start a small businesses sewing clothing for other families.

Zahra said “I am now so happy that I have a skill. My husband is very happy as well. He has seen that I have learned this skill in a sound, safe and good educational environment. The class has been helpful in other ways too. I have made friends, and learned so much about how to keep my children healthy. I am so thankful to AIL for offering me the opportunity to support myself and my family and changing my life for the better.”

Thank you for supporting our program, and women just like Zahra who are looking for a way to improve their lives. We have attached our year-end newsletter to this report and hope you will take a few minutes to read it. 

Nov 25, 2014

An Educated Mom = a Safer Birth!

Health Education
Health Education

AIL runs a comprehensive Health Program that encompasses health treatment, health education and health training. Workshops that relate to pregnancy and childbirth are highly regarded and quickly fill up once posted. Women know that the country has an alarmingly high rate of maternal death and injury and infant mortality. Women want to do the right thing to be safe, once they know what that is. AIL has given two Reproductive Health Workshops for 80 women in the last 2 months with the total for the year now at 285 women trained.

AIL’s 3 hour Expectant Mother Workshop (EM) is another quick and easy way for these women to learn what they need to know. The topics covered include: antenatal and postnatal care, safe childbirth and infant care, child spacing and breast feeding as well as the importance of keeping in touch with clinics or Community Health Workers. The workshops are held in more remote areas where women have few options. The women are under the AIL clinic observation and report back with their newborn for 3 months following birth.

One participant said, "This is the first time that we attended such a workshop and this is the first organization that gives workshops like this for the pregnant women in our area. This shows AIL really cares and reaches out to all people. At the end of the workshop we received a nice new baby kit that contained a hat, pinafore, swaddling, band swaddling, shirt, sun suit, pads and diapers, panties and soap.” In 2014, AIL has given 13 EM Workshops for 340 women (170  pregnant) and remarkably all of the births recorded so far were at clinics rather than a risky home birth situation. In addition to its focused workshops, AIL has provided thousands of women with reproductive health education through the AIL clinics and Community Health Workers posts.

Thank you for your interest in Afghan women’s health issues. We have included Creating Hope International’s newsletter which contains information on AIL’s work. We hope that you will take a moment to read through it.


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