On the 30th of November 2021, we hosted our event Don't Forget Afghanistan, at the Royal Geographical Society. Whether online or in-person, we’re so grateful to all those that joined us. We very much hope you enjoyed the evening, and that you were moved by the informative, albeit sombre series of talks from our esteemed panellists. It is always wonderful to be reminded of what generous, committed and loyal supporters we have, and it was also lovely to see so many new faces. 

The message emerging from the evening was clear: now more than ever, people in Afghanistan need support and advocacy, and humanitarian and development aid must be urgently resumed by international donors to avoid further catastrophe.

Did you miss the event, or are you keen to watch it over again?

Sign up to receive the recording

The lecture and panel

There’s a tremendous sense among Afghans that the world has simply walked away.”

Our Chairman, Chris Kinder, began the series of talks by reflecting on the events of 2021 and what we have been doing to scale up and deliver vital humanitarian assistance.

For the lean season, [Afghan] people need urgent support, and [if] they do not receive any support from any agency or humanitarian organisation, they have only one option for keeping survival of their family members: to sell their livelihood assets and properties."

Fazal Hadi Omarzai, Project Manager at Afghanaid, pre-recorded a short and sobering talk, offering clarity as we enter the lean season about what the humanitarian situation is like in the areas where Afghanaid currently work.

Today I want to call on you stand with us, in solidarity with us and support us through this dark moment and that is through supporting reputable institutions like Afghanaid."

Shaharzad Akbar, Chair of Afghanistan's Independent Human Right's Commission, gave a powerful talk about the human rights and humanitarian landscape in the country following the change in government.

What you don't want to do is ensure that the most vulnerable majority of Afghans suffer as a result of either sanctions or frozen financial assets... Very few sanction schemes work around the world. Who suffers? The common people suffer... It's a very difficult balancing point to find."

Anthony Loyd, war correspondent at The Times spoke on the lack of formal recognition of the Taliban government by the international community alongside the impact of enduring economic sanctions.

Afghanistan is the 14th most vulnerable country in the world to climate change and the most vulnerable country in Asia Pacific to climate change... [But] there's still a lot of opportunity in Afghanistan, especially in the natural environment."

Andrew Scanlon, former Country Manager for the UN Environment Project in Afghanistan, took a deep dive into the impacts of climate change in Afghanistan, and why gains made in climate action over the last two decades must be retained.

Will we stand with those great 35 million people, with a beautiful country, with those promises which we made together to save and survive them by all means?"

Shukria Barakzai, an Afghan politician, journalist and former Ambassador of Afghanistan to Norway joined our panel discussion.

The silent auction

A huge thank you to everyone who kindly got involved in our silent auction either at the reception or online, which included unique jewellery by Sima Vaziry and Pippa Small, beautiful homeware by Yashar Bish and The Afghan Rug shop, and incredible experiences and items from many other generous donors. We'd also like to say a special thank you to everyone that registered, browsed and bid - and well done to all those who successfully secured a prize!

It's all thanks to you 

We can't tell you how thankful we are for your continued support at this challenging time for Afghanistan. Amid the intensifying conflict and enduring insecurity, your generosity and advocacy has never been more vital to ensure that families can make it through the challenging winter months ahead, so we really can't thank you enough for sticking by us.

As our friend Lyse Doucet, the BBC's Chief International Correspondent who recorded pre-recorded a short talk for the evening so aptly articulated it: 

This year, more than ever, Afghan’s need their friends. At a time when it does seem dark, there does need to be light... Three small words, and a very big message: Don’t Forget Afghanistan.”

Help Afghanaid continue to support those who need it most