The program, for which Islamic Relief USA has dedicated $1.4 million, seeks to teach reading skills to illiterate Afghani women. It is expected to help 8,000 beneficiaries in the country’s Nangarhar, Bamyan, and Balkh provinces.
The classes take place in informal settings, which helps foster learning in a comfortable environment. After nine months, the women will learn to read at a fourth- or fifth-grade level—a considerable gain.
“Islamic Relief has long supported initiatives that empower women through participation in effective education programs,” said Sharif Aly, CEO of Islamic Relief USA. “Learning to read effectively is a key factor in lifelong success. Increasing access to literacy programs for at-risk populations is essential.”
More than 80 percent of women are able to read and write simple texts after completing this course. Based on a government agreement, the beneficiaries whose ages are younger and are interested to attend the formal school can be accepted and enrolled at the fourth-grade level class or can apply for higher classes if they pass the exam.
A large portion of the women also receive vocational training, and are given materials, tools, and startup capital to open a small business that supports their household income.
The program is expected to last until February 2020.
Syed M. Hassan
Islamic Relief USA, based in Alexandria, VA, is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) humanitarian organization. Its mission is to alleviate suffering, hunger, illiteracy and disease regardless of color, race, gender or creed, and to provide aid in a compassionate and dignified manner. Islamic Relief USA aims to provide rapid relief in the event of human and natural disasters and to establish sustainable local development projects, allowing communities to better help themselves. Its programs benefit millions of people each year around the world, including in the United States.
Islamic Relief USA meets all of the Standards for Charity Accountability of the BBB Wise Giving Alliance, a national charity monitoring group affiliated with the Better Business Bureau system. Islamic Relief USA is on the U.S. government’s Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) charity list, and it is also a signatory to the code of conduct of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.