All of us at Creating Hope International (CHI) and the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) would like to thank our donors for their support of our “Fast-Tracking” program. Since January, we have educated almost 15,000 women and girls in a variety of subjects, including literacy, tailoring, and computers. The “Fast-Tracking” program allows women to receive education at a different speed than traditional school classes, which are more geared toward educating students at a steady pace. The program allows for a flexible schedule, where students can get educated in a subject in a matter of months or at their own pace if their schedule does not permit them to go to class every day.
From January to July this year, AIL has taught literacy courses to over 3,700 students, 2,300 of which were women and girls. Many of our 200+ literacy classes are part of the fast-tracking program, and are a big reason why we are able to reach so many. AIL has also started offering classes in ‘mobile literacy’, that is, teaching literacy through texting with cell phones. This method has proved to be very fast and efficient in literacy education. A student can enter a mobile literacy course illiterate and leave reading and writing at a 3rd grade level in as little as 5 months.
One girl who attended one of our centers, Nafas, took a fast-tracking course in literacy:
I am a 19 year old girl and I have two children. I hoped one day to go to school and become literate, but because there was no school and the unsafe situation in our area I couldn’t go to school and learn. I told myself that if I could go to school, I would get a job and reach my goals.
It was painful for me when my brother was able to read and write, but I couldn’t. One day I saw some women with their children who were going somewhere, I asked, "Excuse me, where are you going?” She answered, “A learning center has been opened for illiterate women and their children recently. I want to go to register myself and my children." When I heard it, I was so happy and I said to her, “Please wait a minute I should go with you and start literacy class, too.” I soon took my veil and joined them to go to the learning center. When we arrived, I was excited because I saw a lot of women there who had been learning. Right now I can write, read and I can say proudly that I am literate, and I am reaching my wishes and goals.
Nafas’ story is one of many similar stories. Women with children want to get educated, but cannot do it the conventional way. AIL is reaching thousands of women and children from all backgrounds. The Fast-Tracking program is just one of many programs helping to bring education, health, and equality to Afghanistan. Again, we want to thank our donors for helping so many people, all of us greatly appreciate it!
So many wonderful things have happened for the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) in the last few weeks, and we’re very excited to share a few of them with you.
First, on Tuesday the Executive Director of AIL, Sakena Yacoobi received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from Princeton University. The official citation reads:
With a profound reverence for the well-being of others, this visionary leader devotes her life to the empowerment of poor Afghan women and children. With an unwavering commitment to social justice, against all odds, and often at great personal risk, she built and sustains an institute that makes healthcare and education possible for the most vulnerable. It owes its success in establishing clinics, teaching children, and training educators and caregivers to the deep and lasting ties she has forged with the people she serves and with global communities of care. After decades of work, she is still creating hope, in her home country and throughout the world.
Additionally, AIL has had two articles posted at The Huffington Post. The first focuses on AIL’s belief that Education Is the Way to a Healthier Country.
The second article details AIL’s Mobile Literacy Program, giving details of how adding texting to a traditional literacy curriculum helped to accelerate the pace of learning.
Finally, tomorrow is a Global Giving Matching Day, and because AIL is a superstar partner, all donations will be matched at 50%! Matching will begin at 9:00 am EST and funds generally run out after just a few hours.To select a project that you might like to donate to, visit AIL’s page on GlobalGiving.
The Afghan Institute of Learning is very excited to have been given the opportunity to blog at Huffington Post! Our first blog about the Women’s Networking Movement taking place in some of AIL’s centers has been posted. The Women’s Networking Movement is taking place in about 30 of AIL’s centers, schools and clinics. The women coming to these centers are sharing thoughts and ideas in ways that have not been possible until recently.
To learn more about the Women’s Networking Movement, check out our blog at Huffington Post!
Creating Hope International, AIL’s partner, has set up a Facebook page where we will be sharing more news, pictures and information about AIL’s programs. Make sure that you ‘Like’ Creating Hope International on Facebook to get all the latest news!
2013 has thus far been a successful year for Creating Hope International (CHI) and the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL). Our learning centers are growing and expanding, and the attendance rates for our Herat and Kabul centers are significantly higher than the rates recorded last year. Small communities in rural parts of the country have requested that AIL open centers in their villages, because they see the positive impact these centers have on communities comparable to their own. Changes like these are promising because it shows that perceptions on educating women and girls has transformed to the point where communities are actively requesting that AIL educate their wives and daughters.
We are providing education to a growing number of women and girls of all ages and backgrounds. In January of this year, we brought education to over 7,300 girls in subjects such as literacy, English, Arabic, and computer technology. We have also provided these women and girls with ample opportunities to gain skills in sewing, tailoring, carpet and silk weaving, macramé, and painting. All of these skills open doors for careers and other opportunities to make an income. In addition, our Fast-Track program has opened doors to women and girls by providing them with flexible schedules to learn the basics as fast or as slow as they are able to. We have recently started a mobile literacy course where students can obtain accelerated proficiency in literacy in as little as 4 months. Again, we wish to thank you all for your generosity and compassion in making these hopeful changes possible!
The Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) and Creating Hope International (CHI) would like to wish you and yours the happiest of holiday seasons. As you celebrate with those you love, please take a moment to look at CHI’s yearly newsletter, which we’ve attached to this report. As you will see, 2012 has been a transformative year for AIL and CHI. After years of working tirelessly to provide education, training and healthcare to Afghans, we are beginning to see a real change. The minds of those AIL works with are being opened to the possibility of a peaceful Afghan society.
AIL is in the process of finalizing a 5 year funding plan, which will be put into place beginning in 2013. We are looking forward to sharing the details of this plan with you soon, and hope that you will find it in your heart to give generously to help us reach our goal. The people of Afghanistan are making great strides, but our work is not done yet. Instead of backing down, we need to push ahead and continue to give Afghans the tools they need to create a more peaceful country. We are hoping that we can count on you to help continue our work.
The women are beginning to see that through education they can have a better life, and are insisting on educating their children. They are taking charge of their health, and we are seeing more and more women requesting workshops on pre-natal issues as well as reproductive health. AIL is encouraged to see so many Afghan women looking forward to a brighter future and is planning to be there to help the women lead the way to the Afghanistan of their dreams.
Finally, we'd like to take this opportunity to remind you that donations up to $2,000 are being matched at 50% by the Safer World Matching Fund, while funds last. Take this opportunity to make your donation go further this holiday season.
Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.
If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating or by subscribing to this project's RSS feed.
Founder & CEO