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Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women

by Afghan Institute of Learning
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women
Tailoring: A Small Business Skill for Afghan Women

AIL has risen to the challenge of Covid-19 and kept its programs running during the pandemic. Education was provided online and through education packs delivered to students.  The tailoring classes and facilities were at the center of the Covid-19 relief efforts providing PPE production.

Dr. Yacoobi said, “ I am so proud of my staff who have kept AIL running through the pandemic with adapted programs AND produced PPE for ministries and hospitals- 14,000 face shields, 13,000 masks, 400 other items AND opened a 50 bed Covid-19 hospital AND provided food aid and counseling AND provided covid information through Radio Meraj!”

We are glad to say that centers and schools are now open under strict social distancing and sanitization rules. Students are delighted to be back especially the children who missed their friends, teachers and the structure of classroom life.

In August, one of our Herat centers reported these activities: made 400 masks and 13 sets of PPE clothing, map of Afghanistan sewn onto a carpet, prepared Covid-19 awareness clips, planted plants for inside the center and the carpet weaving class completed projects and started new ones.

Your support makes all the difference! Thank you.

Our projects 1155 Fast Track Education and 1073 Healthcare are eligible for the Safer World Fund 50% on donations right now!

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Covid-19 has created a great many difficulties in Afghanistan, especially because it is a poor country and has fragile health and education systems. AIL has had to close its Learning Centers but staff worked hard to adapt its education program to online, distance learning. Students have been provided with education packs and have access to a teacher by email, a hotline and in person if necessary.

It is vital that students continue their learning and do not lose heart.  “It takes time and patience to gain acceptance for girls’ education, especially in rural areas. I am concerned that we do not lose the ground we have gained,” says Dr. Yacoobi.

Quarantine has increased the sense of isolation that many women feel and is pushing girls into more household chores and we fear families will not look to return their girls to class and there will be a consequential rise in child marriage. The stress of the health and economic situation is causing a rise in family disputes and violence against women.  The education packs give girls a focus and a hope that they will return to school or an AIL center for classes in the near future.

AIL has been able to repurpose its tailoring classrooms at many sites to the production of personal protective equipment. Teachers and tailoring course graduates are producing gowns and masks while other staff are joining in and helping to make face shields and doing packaging. These items are being used in AIL health clinics and being donated to the government for use in other cities.

Your support is vital in helping us maintain our distance learning program. 

AIL is working towards: SDG Goal 4 – Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

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Our project 1155 Fast Track Education and 1073 Save Afghan Women and Children with Health care are eligible for a Match from Safer World Fund, up to $1,000 USD per unique donor per project will be matched, while funds last! You can donate to both!

50% returnee donors

100% new donors 

Many of our Learning Centers offer tailoring classes. These are one of the most popular classes and often the first class that an illiterate girl or woman choses to take. The women learn how to produce professional quality clothing for their families and they can start a home business with this skill.  They end the course proficient in all types of sewing and are able to make shirts, skirts, dresses, trousers, coverings, hijabs and household cloth items.

The centers are currently closed but as part of AIL’s coronavirus response, many of these sewing classrooms have been turned over to the production of personal protective equipment with many thousands of gowns and face masks being produced. Tailoring course graduates have returned to the centers to use their skills to assist in this effort. AIL staff are also producing face shields in large numbers. This health equipment is being used in AIL health clinics and some is being donated to the Ministry of Health for distribution to clinics and hospitals in several cities. 

Your support for AIL’s education program has produced fine seamstresses who are now helping AIL and Afghanistan deal with this health crisis situation.

Thank you. 

AIL is working towards: SDG Goal 4 – Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

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Our project 1155 Fast Track Education for Afghan Women and Girls has a chance to win a place in the GlobalGiving Girl Fund!

Donate to project 1155 today and help us get into the fund which provides monthly funds for a whole year! The more people who donate the better our chances! 

Here are details of some of AIL’s activities in the past few months.

  • One rural Herat center reported that almost all sewing class students reach a professional level of tailoring and so can start their own businesses at the end of the course. The tailoring course includes instruction on small business start-up and operation. The women sell their own handmade clothing in the market and get income from that, as well as providing clothing for their families. AIL estimates that about 70% of its tailoring graduates start their own businesses or get work with tailoring companies.
  • AIL’s legal clinic which provides free legal work to poor women held a mini workshop on children’s rights at a rural learning center in December. There were 43 female participants aged between 11 and 50. Topics included, rights and needs of children, making community safe for children, child rights regarding parents and the age of childhood. One woman said, “I am mother to 4 children and I did not know about their rights. This workshop helped me to understand rights and to be a better mother to my children.”
  • In December 2019, AIL distributed some clothes and stationary supplies to students at ten of its learning centers, including those in rural areas of Herat.
  • There was a distribution of food aid to 200 families experiencing difficulties in the winter. Some of these families live in the vicinity of AIL centers. 

Thank you for your support. 

AIL is working towards: SDG Goal 4 – Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

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Sewing classes continue to be the first or second most popular class for women at Learning Centers. These class offer students the ability to learn an exceptionally valuable skill that can be life changing.  Not only do the women learn how to sew but the skills they become proficient in can only be compared to those of a professional tailor.As an example, in September, students at the Jabraeel Learning Center, Herat sewed 160 pairs of clothing. Students are able to save money and earn an income for their family with this skill.

Two new centers have been established at the request of local communities, one in a province that AIL has never worked in before, Nemroz. Sewing as well as other classes are being offered at these new locations. The centers recently acquired new sewing machines and irons to assist students in their studies.

Thank you for your support for women’s education in Afghanistan.

Shahrbanoo, a graduate student of the sewing class from the Jebraeel Learning Center had this to say,” I took a sewing class for one year. It was a perfect class for me. We learned professional sewing skills. After finishing the course, I started sewing clothes for my family and friends. I didn’t sew a lot at that time. But then, because people noticed my sewing skills, they asked me to sew their clothes, too.  I started my own business to earn money and become financially independent. I was happy and found more customers this way. I have promoted my business and now I regularly sew a wide variety of clothes and uniforms.

My father is a worker earning 300 Afghanis per day and our family is too poor to pay for all our living expenses. But since I started my own business, our life has changed completely! I can earn about 400 to 1,000 Afghanis per day now. I can help my father pay for our household expenses and I can help my brothers and sisters go to school by paying their tuition. Now I want to grow my business and open a sewing store. I am thankful to the AIL Learning Center and its founder for providing this opportunity for me which has changed my life.”

Thank you for your support. 

The year end newsletter for CHI is attached.

AIL is working towards: SDG Goal 4 – Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.


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Organization Information

Afghan Institute of Learning

Location: Dearborn, Michigan - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @AIL_ngo
Project Leader:
Sakena Yacoobi
Founder & CEO
Dearborn, Michigan United States
$112,644 raised of $135,000 goal
 
4,408 donations
$22,356 to go
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