Your dollars make the dreams of the girls in our schools in northern Afghanistan possible. With the quality education that you help us provide, these girls will have the opportunity to enter the workforce after graduation, improve their communities, and even stand up for gender equality in Afghanistan.
“My goal is to become a police officer one day,” said a girl from one of our schools. “I have seen explosions on TV and saw that many police officers got injured. But I didn’t get scared. Because the enemies want to scare us so that we won’t be able to serve our country. But I want to go against their wish.”
These girls, who are determined to learn and to make their dreams a reality in spite of difficult conditions, are returning to schools in the thousands. 10.5 million children in Afghanistan are currently enrolled, and 40% of them are females. You have helped us expand in order to serve these girls, as we are in the process of building additional rooms and making roof repairs. You have helped us supply the increasing demand at our schools for new desks, chairs, blackboards, library books, school supplies, and textbooks. By giving girls these materials, you have helped them thrive in the classroom and maximize their learning experiences.
You have also supported the addition of libraries and lab equipment to our schools. The computer centers at two of our schools continue to train girls in essential comptuer skills and improve their chances of employment or higher education, and we have recently opened a third in order to reach even more. 120 girls are currently enrolled in the first round of classes and are excited to begin developing their technical skills for the future.
We believe that every girl in Afghanistan should have access to education and a teacher she can rely on. These girls should go to a school that they can feel proud of and safe in. We thank you for supporting this vision, and for allowing girls at our schools to imagine a future for themselves as productive, empowered individuals.
Your dollars have funded a new desktop computer for girls in our computer literacy class in northern Afghanistan. With your help, we were able to accomplish our goal of providing one of our new computer centers in Balkh Province with another computer, serving girls who will soon complete their secondary education and who are in dire need of computer skills.
The Power of A Technical Education
One computer can make a difference in the lives of hundreds of girls by improving their opportunities for higher education and employment. We have observed that training girls in fundamental computers skills increases the likelihood that they will stay in school longer and eventually graduate, effectively delaying their marriages and fostering their independence.
Furthermore, if a girl is proficient in applications such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and if she is able to navigate the Internet, then she will be better prepared to enter the workforce or continue on to some form of higher education. Since the implementation of our computer literacy program in 2008, yearly enrollment rates have increased significantly, from approximately 1,000 students to 13,200 in 2013. This is the power of a single computer for girls in Afghanistan as they join a world that is becoming increasingly interconnected and where information is easily accessible. A computer will allow these girls to learn about international events and will promote cross-cultural understanding and respect.
A Long-Lasting Impact
Your impact on these girls’ technical education will endure, as one computer will impact approximately 100 girls enrolled in the course every year at the center. The computer will be available for girls to operate for years to come.
Thank you again for supporting our innovative strategy of providing girls in northern Afghanistan with vocational skills while broadening their worldviews with computers. Your dollars will impact the lives of hundreds of Afghan girls who dream of advancing their skills to become more productive and involved in the political, economic, and social life of their country.
Donor Impact: Increasing Literacy Rates & Technical Skills of Girls in Northern Afghanistan
Afghanistan's youth are connected to the digital world just like kids anywhere. Except some are so mired in poverty that they can't find a way to be connected. That is where you come in. Your dollars have helped bridge that gap. The way to educate girls now -- with all the benefits of self-esteem, wider world views, family health, economic health -- is to introduce her to, and educate her in, the computer technology that will change her life and opportunities. Every contribution, small and large, fills the critical need to purchase computers and build out new centers that provide courses for girls to become computer literate. Tapping into technology changes opportunities and changes life's circumstances for each girl who has the ability to attend our centers.
Keyboarding to Change.
28,000 students, mostly girls, attend our schools in Northern Afghanistan. Final exams were administered in June and students are now on break until September. A year ago, however, something unusual began to happen: as we opened our first and then second computer center, we could not keep up with the demand for more computers, more teachers and more centers. It was remarkable. From mullahs to mothers, everyone wanted their daughters to be at the cutting edge of the keyboard. The future, according to the leaders of the community, was on the keyboard and the Ministry of Education agreed as they approached us asking to keep the centers open year-round. We responded with a commitment to raise funds to buy computers and open centers, hire teachers and keep girls in the seats that would expand their literacy to include computer certification courses too. Over 400 girls have graduated with certification credentials from our centers.
A young woman visiting the computer center of one of our schools in the Balkh Province reports,
“This [computer literacy program] will help girls in their studies in school and also gives girls the opportunity to move beyond the boundaries, to learn beyond their textbooks. The more access to better educational facilities for girls, the more powerful our troop of educated girls will be. Connecting these girls to computers is connecting them to the world.”
Empowering Girls. Changing Lives.
Your dollars have provided Afghan girls with access to the world at their fingertips. With new computers, these girls will be able to learn about national and international affairs, become connected to a global community, and empower themselves by strengthening their voices through social media platforms, as well as learn new technical skills required for employment. You have helped us meet the high demand for more computer literacy courses in our schools.
Learning computer skills creates more educational and employment opportunities for Afghan girls and enables them to learn about other countries, such as the U.S., encouraging open-mindedness and respect for national and international cultural differences.
Doors of Opportunity
Donors have the power to open doors of opportunity for the girls in our schools, as these centers teach computer skills to girls, leading to a certification that makes them eligible for certain kinds of employment. Acquiring these technical skills will allow girls to become more economically independent, which increases their confidence, self-reliance, and status in their communities.
Computer course graduates are positioned better to take the Koncur exam, similar to our SAT exams that prepare them for entrace to universities in Afghanistan. From social media to family finances, the incentives for computer skill acquisition are enormous. Now, all the girls need is a keyboard in front of them and that is where you, our donors, come in. Thank you and keep it up. It truly makes a difference.