Help Afghan Boys Trade Guns for Books

by Afghan Institute of Learning
Boys in a computer class
Boys in a computer class

All of us at Creating Hope International (CHI) and the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) would like to thank our donors’ support for the ‘Help Afghan Boys Trade Guns for Books’ project. Our Learning Centers educate all who come through the door, and although a majority of those educated are women, about 30% of the beneficiaries of our programs are young men and boys. Afghanistan is dominated on most if not all levels of government by men. By educating boys in the same centers as girls we aim to close this stark division and create a more equal Afghanistan for both males and females.

Boys are taking courses in many areas, increasing their skills and creating opportunity where there was none before. Boys are learning how to read alongside girls, and are learning valuable skills in a number of topics like computer technology and English. All of these skills are necessary for finding worthwhile work opportunities that can help them and their families. Education is the way to stop violence and ignorance, and it is the only way to live in peace and improve their communities.

An informational workshop was held in May on the topic of “Justice and Fairness”. 50 boys and girls participated side by side and were given the opportunity to hear each other out. One participant in the workshop reviewed their thoughts after the workshop:

This terrible war, the killing, terrors; all are the result of not properly implementing justice. I believe that by implementing justice, injustice will be eradicated from society and peace will come to our country. We hope that someday a righteous person will become the governor and implement justice. I have decided to do anything in order to promote justice in our society. We thank AIL and want them to have more workshops like this in order to give us a solution.”

Afghan boys have a chance to better their society for the future, and they will accomplish this by working with Afghan girls. AIL is bringing the change that Afghans are hungry for, but it will be the Afghan people themselves that will change their society. We want to thank you all for your support of Afghan boys; you are all making a huge difference in the lives of so many!

Dr. Sakena Yacoobi receives her hood at Princeton
Dr. Sakena Yacoobi receives her hood at Princeton

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


Women's Networking Movement

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! 


On behalf of Creating Hope International (CHI) and the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL), we would like to thank you all for your generous support for the ‘Help Afghan Boys Trade Guns for Books’ project.   Although our learning centers focus primarily on educating women and girls, we never turn away students who seek education to better their lives. There are a significant number of Afghan boys who also need education. Although males have a  higher literacy rate than Afghan females, the rate is still well below 50% nationwide. By helping Afghan boys obtain an education, we hope to pave the way to a brighter future for all Afghans.

In January of this year, we helped to educate  3,651  boys  in 33 learning centers, 5 pre-schools and 3 schools in Pakistan. Our boys are taking courses in a variety of topics, such as literacy, English, Arabic, mathematics, and computer technology. Boys are getting an education to better the quality of life for themselves and their families, and they are receiving training they could never have acquired otherwise. They are getting careers as interpreters, administrators, and computer technicians. They are denouncing violence and are promoting human rights and education. Our organization continues to grow, helping a growing number of students, both male and female. We thank you all very much for your unwavering support!

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. 


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Organization Information

Afghan Institute of Learning

Location: Dearborn, Michigan - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Sakena Yacoobi
Dearborn, Michigan United States

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