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Short Information about our Committee in English
The aim of the non-profit organisation registered in Germany under the name of Afghanistan-Schulen (in Afghanistan: VUSAF Union of Assistance for Schools in Afghanistan) is to support education for Afghan girls and boys from nursery school to university. Due to war and unrest, most schools are either destroyed or damaged. Furthermore, many villages never had a school in the past. In order to work effectively, we concentrate our efforts in the North of Afghanistan. We work closely together with the people in the towns and villages. Our partners suggest the projects and together we try to implement them in a culturally acceptable way.
1983 during a holiday together with her daughters, Ursula Nölle saw the suffering in the Afghan refugee camps in Pakistan. Because of her daughter's knowledge of Dari, they managed to get in direct touch with the people in a camp where first schools were being set up. Ursula Nölle's first project was a girls' school, a project which was especially important as girls don't have many chances to be educated. In the following years, many more schools were set up in the camps.
Immediately after the withdrawal of the soviet troops in the north in 1988, people who knew the committee from the refugee camps asked for help to rebuild the schools in their home villages. In the following years, more projects were implemented in this area. In 2002 the office of VUSAF Afghanistan was moved from Peshawar/Pakistan to Kabul.
By 2020 we had projects in five provinces of Afghanistan, but the main activities are in the four northern districts of Faryab where 43 new schools were built and many were repaired- 28 small additional buildings were built with the support of the local communities. In the province of Balkh 16 big school buildings were constructed and two in the province of Samangan. In order to supply drinking water for the school children, the committee finances the construction of water reservoirs and the digging of wells.
In Mazar-e-Sharif as well as Andkhoi and the surrounding villages in the four northern districts of the province of Faryab, we continue to work together with the schools, in particular with regard to teacher training and training of the school management and caretakers for the repair of the infrastructure. As the schools are still growing, there is still great need for further classrooms and training of teachers.
Because the quality of teaching were low in the rural areas, students of the village are struggling to pass the entry test for university. Therefore, we set up an Education Centre (EC). Young people who aim to study at university can revise here all school subjects from grade 10. For students of grades 7 to 9 we offer courses in mathematics and languages (Pashtoo, Dari and English). Additionally, there are English and computer courses.
Furthermore, there are some cultural activities in the form of calligraphy and painting. Every Thursday groups of students and teachers meet to organize games, competitions in poetry and quizzes and perform role plays. The EC's library has a good supply of books in Dari and English.
In private homes, three-year courses are offered for older girls and women who want to try to catch up with lessons missed during the Taliban rule. After a three-year training period, some of them join state schools from grade 7.
For young women in the villages, we offer courses with a during of 18 months during which they study reading, writing and arithmetic three days/week and on the other three days they are learning to sew in our women centers in Andkhoi, Baghebustan and Khancharbagh. Additionally, they are trained in health subjects for mother and child. After conclusion of the course they can keep the sewing machine enabling them to earn money by making dresses for women and children. Two days per week they go to the Women's Center in Andkhoi which we set up next to our Education Centre where they will also be in contact with customers who want to buy or sell what they made at home. In Baghebustan and Khancharbagh the trainee all lessons are taught in the centers.
Much has been achieved, but there is still lots more to be done!
Approx. 40 % of the schools still do not have a proper building, but children are taught in ruins, tents or in the open, other schools are growing and new additional classrooms, and also there are still deficits in the quality of teaching. Therefore, if our donors - maybe you? - continue to support us, we are willing to continue our efforts in constructing new school buildings and in running courses to help improve the education.
Some former employees of VUSAF have taken another step and set up an independent national NGO called OASE Organisation of Afghan Support for Education which is based in Mazar-e-Sharif. As of April 2020 OASE has taken over the Mazar projects from VUSAF.
If you have any questions, please send us an email: info@Afghanistan-Schulen.de