class in session at Baba
Dear Friends and Supporters,
We are very grateful for your generous support to keep our partner schools solvent during this challenging year. With your help, we provided a lifeline to our schools, played a crucial role in the education of marginalized children, and supported the livelihoods of the schools’ teachers and their families during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Private schools play an important role in the education sector in Afghanistan. Approximately 500,000 youth attend private schools, as the public school system is not able to accommodate them. In addition to their benefit for students, private schools have created livelihoods for nearly 5,000 teachers and staff. These schools operate on incoming student tuition to pay for teacher and staff salaries and administration of the schools. At the onset of COVID-19 in March 2020, it was apparent that our partner schools may not survive due to the school closures and lack of revenue. Their meagre emergency funds were running out at a fast pace.
Our schools are located in the marginalized Hazara communities. Our largest school, Marefat – which has been recognized globally for its impact reaching thousands of students over 20 years – was particularly at risk. Marefat serves approximately 3,200 students and employs 210 faculty and staff. With no incoming tuition, it was on the verge of collapse. Bamyan Foundation worked with Marefat to help the school maintain its faculty and staff through “COVID-19 Aid for Education in Afghanistan” on GlobalGiving and “The Initiative to Save Marefat” on the Foundation’s website.
With our other partner schools facing similar challenges, the Foundation employed a similar strategy with respect to three other schools: Rahnaward in Ghor, Baba in Bamyan and our program with ROYA.
In total, with your support, we were able to provide $55,010.3 as stipends to the teachers, scholarships to students, support to the most needy families of our students and provided funds for masks, sanitizers and soap. Additional detail on the use of these funds is below.
Marefat High School (Kabul):
Thanks to your generosity, the Foundation provided an aid package for the amount of $39,328 in the academic year 2020 to Marefat. The following is the breakdown:
- $10,677 was disbursed as $65 stipends for 164 faculty & staff in July 2020.
- The exchange rate at the time: $1=76.5 AFN (Afghan currency)
- $11,437.5 was disbursed as $65 stipends for 175 faculty & staff in August 2020
- School reopened on August 22, 2020
- Upon school reopening, $15,301 awarded as scholarships for 92 students (48 girls and 44 boys)
- $654 was disbursed as $65 stipends for five faculty/staff for the months of September and October
- Altogether, $38,069.5 was spent as stipends and scholarships
- A remaining $1,258.5 will be allocated as either stipends for staff or towards scholarships in the academic year 2021
- The Foundation covered the bank transfer fees.
Rahnaward High School (Ghor):
There are 520 students and 23 teachers and staff at Rahnaward. Fortunately, the COVID-19 rates have not been too high in the mountainous and remote Lal and Sarjangal district of Ghor province where Rahnaward is located. However, with the approaching winter, there is concern for a spike. Similar to Marefat and other schools across Afghanistan, Rahnaward closed its doors between March 5, 2020 and August 22, 2020 as per the directive of the Afghan Ministry of Education. Thanks to our collective efforts, the Foundation provided $10,111 to Rahnaward in the academic year 2020, as follows:
- $ 8,481 as scholarships for 88 students (48 girls and 40 boys)
- $1,430 as a one-time $62 stipend for 23 teachers and staff
- S200 for soap, sanitizer and masks
- The Foundation covered the bank transfer fees.
Baba High School (Bamyan):
There are 430 students and 28 teachers and staff at Baba. Similar to Marefat and Rahnaward, Baba remained closed between March 5, 2020 and August 22,2020 as per the directive of the Afghan Ministry of Education. Three staff were reporting to work to look after the facility during the closure. Thanks to your generosity, the Foundation provided $3,896 to Baba in the academic year 2020, as follows:
- $3,501 as scholarships for 23 students (14 girls and 9 boys)
- $195 as one-time $65 stipend for the 3 staffs
- $200 for sanitizer, soap and masks
- The Foundation covered the bank transfer fees
The Foundation has been supporting the former nine child laborers through partnership with ROYA since 2017. The Foundation provided $1,675.30 as follows:
- $1,198.3 as scholarships for the nine children (3 girls and 6 boys)
- $405 as support for the families of the nine children
- $72 as Bank transfer fee
We have recently learned that the Afghan Ministry of Education has ordered school closures on December 5, 2020 due to the likelihood of COVID-19 surge in winter. The schools may remain closed until March 2021. Further, the nominated/acting minister of education was not confirmed by the Afghan parliament, and the new minister may have a different roadmap for school opening/closures. We will update you as we receive quarterly updates from our schools.
We thank you for your support of these schools serving the marginalized Hazara community. The people we serve are survivors. Decades of discrimination and marginalization combined with targeted terrorist attacks in recent years have made them incredibly resilient. We will get through this pandemic together and come out stronger because of it.
classroom sanitized at Baba
outdoor class at Rahnaward
class in session at Rahnaward
our students at Baba