Amidst the ongoing, long-term strife in the region, we are creating environments where children can study with peace of mind and have opportunities to read picture books.
Background of Activities
As public safety has deteriorated due to repeated conflicts, 40% of school-aged children are still unable to go to school. In addition, in about 40% of schools, many children take classes in tents or outdoors, and the adult literacy rate remains only 43% (female: 29.8%).
What We Do
As of 2018, there are about 18,000 schools in Afghanistan, only around half of which have school buildings. The percentage of schools that have a school library is only about 10% (as of 2015).
The Afghan Ministry of Education has publicized a policy to set up libraries in 36% of all schools by 2021. In order to promote library activities in elementary schools in Afghanistan, SVA works on developing a guideline for library management, building a model school library, providing teacher and librarian training, and carrying out mobile library services. At the same time, we run the Children’s Library to offer out-of-school child activity services that are also available to children who have no access to school education. Children’s Library carries out cultural activities such as drawing pictures and recitation of traditional poems as well as regular library activities including circulation of books and browsing. Furthermore, we publish picture books and paper theaters (KAMISHIBAI) in two local languages, which are distributed to school and public libraries. Our aim is to improve the quality of education through library activities for children.
Starting with the implementation of emergency relief operation centered on food distribution, which was triggered by the airstrikes in Afghanistan following the 9-11 attacks in 2001, we have been conducting various emergency relief projects for 20 years. Our recent humanitarian assistance operations include a variety of projects such as raising awareness of COVID-19 prevention, protection of women and children, provision of education under emergency situations, and of assistance in development of safe water, sanitation, and hygiene systems including well construction.
Activities So Far
Following the airstrikes in Afghanistan, which followed the 9-11 attacks in 2001, we implemented emergency relief operations centered on food distribution. Since then, we have been conducting various educational and cultural support activities.