For women and girls in Afghanistan, life comes with many barriers. In conservative areas, fear of stigmatisation and violence prevents many women from claiming their human rights, keeping them shackled in poverty. Afghanaid is working to change this. We know that gender equality is critical to achieving progress in Afghanistan. That’s why we are working to increase understanding and acceptance of women’s rights, and to change attitudes towards issues such as violence against women and early or forced marriage.

Please make a donation today and help vulnerable women and girls in Afghanistan

Afghanaid trains local human rights defenders, enabling them to advocate for the social and economic rights of women and intervene on behalf of vulnerable women in their communities. One woman whose life has been transformed with the help of Afghanaid's human rights defenders is Samira:

“When I was younger, I was not allowed to leave the house unless I was going to school and, once I had finished high school, I wasn’t allowed to leave at all. I always wanted to continue my education and become a teacher so that I could share my knowledge with others, but my parents would not allow it.

Then, one of Afghanaid’s human rights defenders, Ashaqullah, along with a trusted community elder and a local religious leader, Mawlawi Kakar, came to convince my parents to change their minds. Massouda, who I used to go to school with but had also since been trained by Afghanaid to become a human rights defender, came to speak to the women in my family, to explain what our rights are according to Islam. The combination of both male and female human rights defenders, as well as respected community members, convinced my family to allow me to enroll in the teacher training college and my dreams have come true!

My community’s attitude towards women’s rights has definitely changed. Afghanaid uses real-life examples and evidence, as well as using an approach rooted in our local culture and customs, which has allowed our community to accept their work and even work with them.

My niece was in 8th grade when her father, my brother, decided she was no longer allowed to go to school. As she was going to get married at some point, he considered it a waste of money and time for her to continue attending school, and did not see any need for her going. Thanks to Afghanaid, I knew the best way to approach my brother and had the knowledge I needed to convince him to enroll my niece back into school. I urged him that it is important for a woman to be educated even when she is married, because then she will be able to help her children and it is beneficial to the entire family.

Now, I am working in the government offices! I am very excited about my new job and love the work I am now doing. It is great to have this new status and command more respect in my community. Thanks to Afghanaid, my family is now supportive and proud of me - they are always telling people about my achievements!"

Afghanaid also works closely with influential members of communities, such as religious leaders like Mawlawi Kakar, who help us to spread positive messages about women’s rights through a culturally sensitive Islamic perspective. By running community-wide awareness raising campaigns, we facilitate a broader understanding and acceptance of women’s rights.

A donation today will enable us to work with more communities, helping us to reach many more women and girls, so that they can claim their rights and build a brighter future for themselves and their families.

Find out more: How we are helping   How you can help